March 05, 2014

Roast Chicken and Avocado Rice

I love a roast chicken dinner. If I'm going to turn on the oven, I might as well roast two chickens, right? One for dinner tonight and the second one can be for another or better yet, made into chicken salad! Yum, yum, yum. Chicken salad with finely chopped red onions and celery. Sometimes I add cranberries or raisins, other times I'll sprinkle in some cumin or curry powder, but I always use Hellmann's Mayonnaise.

But this post isn't about that. I prepped two chickens, two different ways and shoved them in the oven.

I like to start off with a super hot oven preheated at 450°F convection (475°F regular). 

The red marinade is a mixture of sweet paprika, smoked paprika, garam masala, garlic powder, onion powder, ground cinnamon, cumin, black pepper, a teaspoon of chicken boullion, mixed with a few tablespoons of white vinegar and a splash of oil until it becomes a nice bright paste.

I measured nothing. Just taste as you go as long as there's not cross contamination between the marinade and raw poultry!

The other chicken was slathered and marinated with lots of lemon zest, garnulated garlic, tarragon, dill weed, dried onion flakes, salt, a spoon of chicken boullion and black pepper then lemon juice and olive oil was added. This smelled amazing. It was fresh, bright and herb-y.

To the roasting pans, I threw in a few carrots, bay leaves and a cut up onion. Before roasting, about a third of a cup of water was added to the bottom. This helps keep the veggies from drying out and to create steamy environment for the chickens to roast in. It also creates an amazing pan gravy at the end!

Once the birds are all spiced up and ready for the oven, put the pans in on the lower third of the oven and close the oven door. Turn the heat down to 375°F convection (400°F regular). The chickens will need to cook for about 1 hour and 40 minutes or 1 hour and 20 minutes for a single chicken.

The breasts were starting to brown a lot quicker than I wanted, so I simpley tented the chickens with a piece of foil. Do this if you notice the same thing happening with yours.

The end result was deliciously moist and flavourful. I carved it up and the carcass/wing tips were saved for stock. All that deliciousness at the bottom of the pan was sopped up with homemade flat bread which was basically plain pizza dough grilled on the stone. Chewy and pillow-y around the edges, crisp in some parts; the perfect vehicle for carrying gravy into hungry mouths.

I also made a batch of seasoned rice. It was cooked in chicken stock, generous pinch of cumin and a handful or two of raisins. After it was cooked, I mixed in a diced avocado and served it warm. It's a weird combination, but it worked well together. The raisins offered a touch of sweetness which was a nice addition to the meal and the avocado added a nice nuttiness and their creamy texture changed the rice completely. 

I love avocados! Avocado rice is one of my favourite things, ever.

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Hi, I'm Janetta from Toronto. I cook, bake and often veganize recipes. I photograph nearly everything and those photos will most likely end up being posted here. I've got a little black cat named Tank, who's really cute and a little bit nosy. You'll see a lot of photos of her too!

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