This time of year brings about a certain stillness that I crave. Sure, things quiet down when the kids go back to school, and then they quiet down even more when the air begins to chill, but once it hovers around freezing, there is a final layer of peace that is achieved. Total stillness. No moving about outside, very little traffic, and no knocks on the door. This stillness is the sole reason I love winter. I crave it all year.
There is little better than a still day spent in the kitchen. Kids and husband gone. Candles burning. Nothing but the sound of Adele playing and the dog snoring in the background. Knife in hand as I do my favorite kitchen chore, chopping veggies and herbs. Prepping and preparing a lovely Sunday meal for my family for when they return from their outing, it's therapy only the kitchen can grant.
Cooking doesn't always come from the heart, but on these days it does. A tender and juicy Skillet-Roasted Lemon Chicken fills the kitchen with a wonderful and comforting aroma that warms hearts. Some days people have to be called to dinner, but with this in the oven, you will find everyone gathering in the kitchen early.
A comforting chicken dinner with no chance of anyone knocking on the door? It's heavenly. Try it sometime.
Skillet-Roasted Lemon Chicken
Adapted from Cooking For Jeffrey
by Ina Garten
2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
1 teaspoon whole fennel seeds
salt and black pepper, to taste
1/3 cup good olive oil
1 lemon, halved and sliced 1/4 inch thick
2 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 (4 pound) chicken, backbone removed and butterflied
1/2 cup dry white wine, such as Pinot Grigio
Juice of 1 lemon
Note: My kids don't care for fennel so I made a different herb mixture using fresh sage and thyme.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Place the thyme, fennel seeds, 1 tablespoon salt, and1 teaspoon pepper in a mini food processor and process until ground. Pour the olive oil into a small glass measuring cup, stir in the herb mixture, and set aside.
Distribute the lemon slices in a 12-inch cast-iron skillet and distribute the onion and garlic on top. Place the chicken, skin side down, on top of the onion and brush with about half the oil and herb mixture. Turn the chicken skin side up, pat it dry with paper towels (very important!), and brush it all over with the rest of the oil and herb mixture.
Roast the chicken for 30 minutes. Pour the wine into the pan (no on the chicken!) and roast for another 10 to 15 minutes, until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast registers 155 to 160 degrees.
Remove the chicken from the oven, sprinkle it with the lemon juice, cover the skillet tightly with aluminum foil, and allow to rest for 10 to 15 minutes. Cut the chicken into quarters or eights, sprinkle with salt, and serve hot with the pan juices, cooked lemon, and onion.
|Theme: Cooking For Jeffrey!|