Roast harissa but­ter chicken with cracked wheat

ROAST CHICKEN, ONLY SPICIER, SERVED WITH FRESH, HERBY GRAINS

The Simple Things - - GATH­ER­ING -

Serves 6

4 gar­lic cloves, peeled 1 pre­served lemon 1 tsp cumin seeds 1 tsp co­rian­der seeds 1 tsp sweet smoked pa­prika 2 tbsp harissa A bunch of co­rian­der A bunch of pars­ley 80g but­ter, at room tem­per­a­ture Olive oil 1 x 1.6kg chicken 1 lemon 425ml fresh chicken stock 1 onion 2 toma­toes 350g bul­gur wheat Greek yo­gurt, to serve

1 Pre­heat oven to 190C/Fan 170C/ 375F. Halve the pre­served lemon and re­move the seeds. In a dry fry­ing pan toast the cumin and co­rian­der seeds. Place in a food pro­ces­sor along with the pa­prika, pre­served lemon, harissa, half the herbs (stalks and all) and the peeled gar­lic. Sea­son and blitz to a paste.

2 Add the but­ter and 2 tbsp of olive oil and pulse un­til smooth.

3 Use your hands to care­fully prise the chicken skin away from each breast, to cre­ate a pocket. Slash the skin on the thighs and rub the but­ter mix all over – un­der the skin mainly and all over the top.

4 Halve the lemon and pop it into the chicken cav­ity, then place in a small, snug-fit­ting roast­ing tray. Roast for around 1¼ hours, or un­til golden and crisp and cooked through – check that the juices run clear around the thigh area. Baste the chicken a cou­ple of times dur­ing cook­ing.

5 When the chicken has about 20 mins left to cook, start the bul­gur wheat. Heat your chicken stock in a medium pan. Mean­while peel and finely chop the onion, and de­seed and finely chop the toma­toes.

6 Pour a glug of olive oil into a saucepan and put on a medium-low heat. Add the onion and sweat for 10 mins, un­til soft. Add the toma­toes and cook for a fur­ther 5 mins, then add the bul­gur wheat. Stir for a minute, then add the hot chicken stock and sea­son lightly.

7 Bring to the boil, pop on the lid, then re­duce the heat and sim­mer for 8 mins, un­til the wheat is cooked through. Re­move from the heat, cover the pan with a tea towel and put a lid on top to keep it warm. Chop the rest of the co­rian­der and pars­ley leaves and stir through the bul­gur wheat.

8 When the chicken is ready, leave to rest for 10 mins, then squeeze over the lemon from the cav­ity and carve – you can carve tra­di­tion­ally or shred the meat into the but­tery juices to keep it moist. Serve with the bul­gur wheat and tangy thick Greek yo­gurt.

One op­tion is to serve the chicken shred­ded in its pan juices, then put the bul­gur wheat to good use mop­ping up

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