Recipe

Classic roast chicken with gravy

This classic French technique for roasting chicken keeps it moist and succulent while also making sure you end up with browned, crispy skin.

  • 35 mins preparation
  • 1 hr 10 mins cooking
  • Serves 4
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Ingredients

Classic chicken roast
  • 50 gram butter, softened
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1.4 kilogram whole chicken
  • 3 (500g) medium brushed potatoes (sebago), peeled and quartered lengthwise
  • 3 medium (320g) carrots, halved lengthways, then halved crossways
  • 2 medium (285g) white onions, cut into wedges
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Gravy
  • 1 tablespoon plain flour
  • 1 1/2 cup (375ml) salt-reduced chicken stock

Method

  • 1
    Preheat oven to 220°C (200°C fan-forced). Combine butter and garlic in a small bowl; season.
  • 2
    Rinse chicken under cold water; pat dry inside and out with paper towel. Starting from neck end of breast, carefully separate skin from flesh of chicken without tearing the skin. Using your fingers, spread garlic butter evenly under skin to cover chicken breasts. Tie legs together with kitchen string.
  • 3
    Toss vegetables and oil in a flameproof roasting pan; season. Push vegetables to outer sides of pan; place chicken in the centre, breast-side down (see recipe tips). Roast 20 minutes.
  • 4
    Turn chicken breast-side up, turn vegetables, baste both with pan juices. Roast for 40 minutes, basting during cooking.
  • 5
    To test if chicken is cooked, pierce the thickest part of the thigh with a skewer. If the juices run clear, it's cooked, if they're a little pink, return to oven for 5-10 minutes, then test again. Transfer chicken and vegetables to a platter; cover with foil.
  • 6
    Make gravy: Pour pan juices from baking dish into a small jug. Discard fat from surface of pan juices; reserve juices. Sprinkle flour into same baking dish; cook, stirring, over heat until well browned. Gradually add reserved pan juices and stock, stirring with a wire whisk until gravy boils and thickens. Strain gravy into a serving jug.
  • 7
    Serve chicken with vegetables and gravy.

Notes

Starting the chicken roast breast-down is part of a French technique that allows the juices from the roast to trickle into the leaner breast meat. Part way through roasting, the bird is flipped breast-up to create a delicious crisp brown skin.

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