Need a little dinner inspiration? We tweaked our roasted chicken recipe last weekend just a bit by creating an incredible butter rub to slather on with the mix of fresh herbs, garlic, onions, fennel and baby lemons picked right off a beautiful California lemon tree. We prepped the chickens about an hour before we roasted them as well and let the rub really penetrate before we roasted them. Make sure to add some wine and stock to the pan also to make sure the chicken stays super moist. Absolutely delicious!
Butter Rubbed Roasted Chicken
1 whole chicken, giblets removed, rinsed well inside and out
2 whole lemons, quartered
1 bunch thyme
4 stems rosemary
2 yellow onions, chopped into chunks
4 carrots, cleaned and roughly chopped
1 head fennel, chopped
1 whole clove of garlic, quartered
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 cup chicken stock
1/2 cup white wine
3 small lemons, quartered
For the rub:
4 tablespoons butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon rosemary, chopped fine
1 tablespoon thyme, chopped fine
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper
Zest of 1 lemon + 1 tablespoon lemon juice
Melt the butter then whisk in all the ingredients. Place in the refrigerator to harden again. When the butter has cooled to a semi-soft consistency remove from the fridge and slather over the chicken skin, and under the skin. (Carefully lift the skin away from the chicken with your fingers and spread a bit of the butter rub directly on the meat.)
Then stuff a few sprigs thyme and rosemary under the skin as well.
Stuff the cavity of the chicken with 1 whole head of garlic, cut into quarters, 1/2 white onion, quartered, 1 lemon, quartered and the remaining rosemary and thyme.
Season the outside of the chicken with 1/2 teaspoon paprika, then generously with salt and pepper. Place on top of the remaining vegetables and remaining lemons, halved, in a roasting pan and add 1/4 cup chicken stock and 1/4 cup white wine. Roast at 400 for an hour and a half – 2 hours until the juices run clear and a meat thermometer reads about 170. Remove from the oven and tent for 10-15 minutes to left the juices settle a bit before serving. Serve sliced off the bone with a bit of crispy skin, the vegetables and a drizzle of the pan juices.