Roast chicken with savoury rice
- 1.5kg oven-ready fresh chicken
- 1tbsp extra virgin olive oil plus extra for greasing
- sea salt and black pepper
- 1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 red pepper, deseeded and cut into roughly 1.5cm chunks
- 1 yellow pepper, deseeded and cut into roughly 1.5cm chunks
- 2 slender leeks, or 1 large leek, trimmed and cut into roughly 1cm slices
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and very thinly sliced
- ½tsp ground turmeric
- 1tsp ground cumin
- 1tsp ground coriander
- 125g easy-cook brown rice
- finely grated zest and freshly squeezed juice of ½ lemon
- 450ml hot chicken stock (made with 1 stock cube)
Preheat the oven to 200°C/fan oven 180°C/gas 6.
Lightly oil a fairly large, shallow ovenproof dish or roasting tin and place the chicken inside it. It will need to hold 2.5 litres (see tip below).
Remove the trussing elastic and retie the chicken’s legs with string if you like, or leave just as they are.
Season with salt and lots of ground black pepper. Roast for an hour.
Ten minutes before the chicken is ready, prepare the rice.
Heat the remaining oil in a large non-stick frying pan and gently fry the onion and peppers for 5 minutes or until softened, stirring regularly.
Stir in the leeks, garlic and spices and cook for 1 minute more. Add the rice and stir well.
Take the chicken out of the oven and transfer to a board.
Add the rice mixture to the baking dish or tin and stir in the lemon zest and juice and hot chicken stock
Place the chicken on top and cover the whole dish with a large piece of foil, pinching around the edges to seal. Return to the oven and bake for a further 30 minutes, or until the chicken is thoroughly cooked and the rice is tender.
Carve the chicken and serve with a large mixed salad or green vegetables.
• Use easy-cook brown rice for this recipe. You’ll sometimes find it in boil-in-the-bag packs which you need to simply snip open to use. Because it’s been par-cooked and then dried, it’s much quicker to cook. If you can’t get hold of any, use 125g of any wholegrain rice, but boil for 15 minutes then drain before stirring into the tin; this will help give it a head-start.
• To make sure your dish or tin is large enough for this recipe, check the volume by filling with measuring jugs full of cold water. It will need to hold 2.5 litres of water – a little larger is fine, but you can’t go a whole lot smaller
Following the 28 day plan?
- Take leftover chicken off the bones and put into a shallow dish
with the rice and vegetables. Cool quickly, cover and keep in the
fridge, and use within 2 days. Eat cold or reheat in a microwave
until piping hot throughout