Sunday, March 06, 2011

Winter's Bitch

"In the spring I have counted one hundred and thirty-six different kinds of weather inside of four and twenty hours." ~ Mark Twain

In the span of less than a week, we've experienced five below zero, then 40 and raining, and then back to the Snowpocalypse. I've given up on trying to understand it or predict it; I'm now just trying to ride it out. So it doesn't look like the winter is going to be through messing with us anytime soon. Thus, we need more hearty, rib-sticking, soul-warming comfort food.

Now I have always been a big fan of a roast chicken, as evidenced many times on this blog. But here's a slightly different approach to the dish that was shared with me by my friend, Heather. She and her husband have two small boys, and it's their family favorite.  I can see why, as it's simple, delicious, and elevates a random Tuesday night to something pretty special.

One Pot Chicken Dinner

1 chicken, cut up -- or 4 chicken breast halves
4-10 red or yellow potatoes, peeled and quartered (depending on how many mouths you're feeding)
4-12 carrots, peeled and cut into 2-inches pieces (again, depending on how many people you're serving)
1/4 onion, diced (I used a whole onion)
1/3 cup butter, room temperature, softened or melted
1 clove garlic, finely chopped (or more, if preferred--LOTS more!)
pepper (to taste)
* I added a pinch of red pepper flakes and a good sprinkling of dried oregano.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees (F).

Place potatoes, carrots, and onions in bottom of large casserole dish or Dutch oven. Rinse chicken thoroughly and pat dry. Place chicken on top, skin-side up. In a small bowl, mash up and mix butter with garlic, salt and pepper. Spread or drizzle butter mixture over the top of the chicken. Cover* and bake (at 450) for 60 minutes, or until chicken reaches internal temperature of 165-170. (Basting a few times, every 20-30 minutes, is a really good idea!)

*OOPS! I missed the part of the instructions where you were supposed to cover the dish, which explains why the garlic on top of my chicken pieces burned. But I just scraped the burned bits off, and the dish was perfect. Next time, I will cover it, but I would think that the foil should come off (or go on) halfway through.

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