Chicken roast for Christmas!


20 min


45 min

Roasting a whole chicken is one of the easiest way to cook and eat the bird. This dish can be served to a good number of people without much effort in the kitchen and leftovers can be turned in to salads and sandwiches the following day. Sometimes, I use the carcass and bones to make chicken stock.

I have tasted roasted turkey with cranberry sauce at BBQ Nation, a restaurant in Chennai. I found it bit dry and rubbery and didn’t become a big fan of it that day but has always dreamt of roasting whole turkey for Thanksgiving day. Every year it kept postponing and this year we were determined to do it. Again we missed it as I gave birth to my son couple of days before Thanksgiving weekend.

We replaced turkey with chicken and decided to roast a whole chicken for Christmas this year and also to celebrate my son’s First month birthday. I stuffed the bird with garlic, thyme and onions. I basted it frequently with butter, that gave the bird a pretty brown layering. They tasted simple, delicious and had wonderful flavor and aroma. We loved it!

This post is specially for a dear friend Aarthi Elumalai , her blog Passion to pen. She had been asking for this recipe for a long time and somehow I couldn’t write about this. Apologies for posting it this late. Better late than never right!

1 whole chicken (3 pounds)

1 lemon – halved

3 onions – halved
4 fresh thyme sprigs
6-8 garlic cloves

2 turnips

6 carrots

10 red potatoes
1 cup low sodium chicken broth
1/4 cup Olive oil or melted butter

Salt & pepper

Kitchen twine

Basting brush

For the gravy:
1 tbs corn starch

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup shallots


1.Preheat the oven to 475′ F. Layer the roasting pan with oil/ melted butter. Remove the chicken giblets and neck from the body cavity. Rinse and clean the chicken thoroughly. Pat dry with paper towels.

2. Rub the chicken with oil/butter, salt and pepper. Place the lemon, garlic, onions, thyme and 4-5 garlic in the body cavity. With a kitchen twine, wrap the legs together and tie them tight. Here is a link to the video on how to truss a chicken.

3. Cut the turnips and carrots in similar size 3/4 inch wedges and half the red potatoes and onions. Place the veggies in a large bowl, add little olive oil, thyme sprigs, salt and pepper and toss well.

4. Place the chicken, breast side up, on the center of the roasting pan, place the veggies around it. Roast for 30 minutes. after that pour the broth over the chicken and reduce the temperature to 400’F. Roast, basting every 10 minutes until cooked through, for approximately 45- 50 minutes. Run a thermometer into the thickest part of the bird and the reading should be 180F. If you don’t have a thermometer, press a clean knife at the thickest part and see whether the juices run clear.

5. Remove from the oven, cover it with aluminum foil for 20 minutes.

6. Scrap the pan and pour the pan juices in to a medium saucepan. Add shallot, remaining garlic, salt and water to the pan. Bring it to a boil and boil for 5-8 minutes. Dissolve corn starch in 10 ml water and whisk it into the boiling mixture. Cook and stir till the gravy thickens.

7. Remove the garlic, lemon, thyme and onions from the cavity and discard. Carve the chicken and serve with the gravy.

I removed the skin before eating. Also don’t forget to remove the twine.

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  1. What stunning pics and your chicken looks SO yummy and tempting!

  2. Roasted whole chicken tempts me a lot, with those veggies and ready to have rite now..

  3. Ah.. thanks for posting.. *drools*the photos r so tempting.. i am cooking this chicken for my mom.. hey i am going to India next week.. will let u know how it turns out..

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