Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Sweet Horshradish Chicken

I don't roast whole chickens too often, but when I do, I usually use this recipe for Horseradish Chicken. It comes out amazingly sweet and juicy, with a wonderful flavor. If you make it (and you should...), serve with mashed potatoes because the gravy is fabulous.

The recipe:
Horseradish Roasted Chicken
2 Tablespoons softened butter
1 Tablespoon grated fresh Horseradish(or a little more if you like)
1 Tablespoon (or more!) fresh Horseradish from a jar (the kind in the refrigerated section by the cheese/butter/eggs - DO NOT USE that white mayonaise-y prepared horseradish sauce !!! BLECCCCH !!!
3, 4 or more cloves of garlic, minced
3.5 - 4 lb Whole Chicken
Salt & pepper

Heat your oven to 350 F.
Combine the softened butter, garlic, and Horseradish in a small bowl.
Starting at the neck end of the chicken, gently separate the skin from the flesh over the breast. Put your hand all the way in and loosen the skin over the thighs, too, being careful not to tear the skin.
Spread as much of the butter as possible UNDER the skin.
Pat the skin back in place and rub the remaining butter on the top of the skin.
Sprinkle with salt & pepper.
Put the chicken on a roasting pan .
Bake until the juices run clear when an inner thigh is pierced to a temp of 160 with an instant read thermometer in the thickest part of the breast, about 1 hour 15 minutes 15-20 minutes/pound.
Remove the chicken and add 1/4 cup water to the pan and bring to a simmer on top of the stove over medium heat, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
Cook until reduced and thickened, about 5 minutes.
Carve the chicken and serve with the sauce.

I generally use a little more butter and horseradish than the recipe calls for. It's also a little easier to work with if you melt the butter, add the horseradish & garlic, then stick the mixture in the freezer for fifteen-twenty five minutes or so. It spreads better.
You can also roast some small red skinned new potatoes with this and of course, some healthy steamed veggies, like sugar peas are also a good compliment.

Serves 4 - 6 (Depending on the size of the bird - I used a big 6 pound "Sunday Roaster" once & LOTS of butter/Horseradish mixture both inside AND out - 6 people were very happy and we still had lunch the next day!)
I once made this dish using just chicken breasts (with the bones and the skin still on) - just bake the breasts at 350 F for 30 minutes or so in a foil lined pan. This dish also makes a nice gravy for rice.

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