Adapted from The Barefoot Contessa on FoodTV
Prep time: 5 minutes
Roasting time: 1 hour or so
1 roasting chicken, cleaned
2 large heads of garlic, cut in half horizontally exposing the cloves. Do not peel
1 ½ lemons, cut in wedges length-wise
1 bunch of fresh thyme
¼ tsp each Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper (to season the cavity)
1 tbsp olive oil
4 cups of mixed mushrooms, quartered (I used shitake – without the stems, small portobellos and cremini)
1. Preheat the oven to 375°F/190°C
2. To prepare a chicken for roasting, I do some additional cleaning of the bird, removing any pin feathers left and taking out that huge lump of fat. Gone are the days when my grandmother and mother used to save the chicken fat and skin to make schmatz (think ghee or clarified butter, but from chickens. Now I just throw it out.)
3. Season the cavity with salt and pepper and put ½ the bunch of thyme, 1 head of garlic and ½ the lemon in the cavity. Tie the legs together and pin the wings under the bird.
4. Line a small roasting pan with foil (you don’t have to, but clean up is so much easier) and put the rest of the thyme down as a bed for the chicken.
5. Lay the chicken, breast side up and rub with olive oil and sprinkle a little more salt and pepper.
6. Put the rest of the garlic and lemon wedges around the chicken and roast for about 45 minutes.
7. Add the mushrooms and toss with the juices and oils in the pan. Add a little more oil if needed and continue to roast for 20 minutes.
8.Test the chicken with a meat thermometer for an accurate read. It’s ready at 190°F/87°C.
9. Place the chicken on a platter and cover with aluminum foil for 15 minutes or so. It keeps the chicken juicy.I served it with some steamed spinach and just added some of the roasted garlic to it.
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