This recipe combines some classic ingredients to create a delectable roasted chicken. The combination of the natural juices and honey for basting and initial high heat for roasting ensures moist and flavorful meat.
Typical Italian herbs, oregano and basil give the chicken a Mediterranean flair. Make sure you crush the herbs between your fingers to release their aromatic oils as you sprinkle it on. The fresh thyme sprigs in the cavity release their aromatic flavor to further permeate the dish with taste.
Honey is the real star of this recipe. Warming it makes it easier to brush the golden gel over the chicken. The rich amber fluid has been consumed for centuries as humans set up apiaries to house beehives. These solid structures facilitate the bees processing nectar from an assortment of flowers. The social structure of bees is quite complex with a colony consisting of a single queen and groups of drones and worker bees. The result is a truly unique food.
This glazed chicken can form the centerpiece for a great meal. Just add a serving of brown or wild rice, some steamed carrot chunks, and a fresh green salad with romaine lettuce, cucumber slices, tomato wedges, and large pieces of diced avocado. For dressing, drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and splash on some vinegar.
Lemony Honey Glazed Roasted Chicken
- 1 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 (3 1/2 – 4 lbs.) whole roasting chicken
- 1 Tbsp. dried Italian herbs (or 1/2 Tbsp. dried oregano and 1/2 Tbsp. dried basil)
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- 4-5 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1/3 cup honey
Pour lemon juice in large bowl. Place chicken in juice. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour. Turn chicken over and let marinate an additional hour.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Remove chicken from marinate. Sprinkle on Italian herbs. Salt and pepper to taste. Place thyme sprigs in cavity of chicken.
Place chicken breast side up on a rack in roasting pan. Roast uncovered for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 375 degrees and roast for an additional 30 minutes.
Heat honey and with pastry brush thoroughly coat chicken all over. Lower heat to 350 degrees. Continue to cook until well browned, about 45 minutes, occasionally basting chicken with the natural juices and recoating it with honey. Use a meat thermometer to make sure chicken is fully cooked, 170 degrees.
If desired, use gravy separator to remove fat from pan juices and ladle juice over brown rice.
Makes 6 servings. Per serving: 4 oz.
Per serving: 225 calories, 7 g total fat (2 g saturated fat), 16 g carbohydrate, 25 g protein, 0 g dietary fiber, 76 mg sodium.
The American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) www.aicr.org.