There’s something about putting food in an oven that scares a lot of people, including myself. Roasting is one basic cooking technique that is often mistaken to be a complicated process. It isn’t—that’s what I discovered after watching our mom pop tray after tray of good food inside our decade-old oven.
The process looks tricky at first—preheating the oven, lowering the temperature, letting the food sit in until thoroughly cooked—you get the picture. But once you get the basic idea on how to do it, the procedure starts to become simple, that you can do it even with your eyes closed (though I wouldn’t recommend that you do it that way).
So last Saturday, my brother Alvin came up with a simple recipe that involves roasting. The recipe was created in his head instantly during one of his trips to the spice section of a supermarket. (Don’t you just love it when you get an A-Ha! moment grocery shopping?) It was a French-inspired recipe that used a few very basic ingredients.
Since he had a French theme going on, it makes sense to use plenty of herbs in the recipe. We used an herb mix of rosemary, thyme, marjoram and oregano—all conveniently bottled in a grinder. We used the Provence Herbs Mill by Drogheria, which was bought at SM Hypermarket. You can mix your own herbs and grind them in a mortar and pestle if you wish, but for the purposes of convenience, we used the bottled one.
If you want the chicken to soak in the flavor of the herbs, keep the marinated chicken in the fridge overnight. My brother used two lemons for this recipe, but a lot of water seeped out of the chicken, so he discarded the first lemon marinade. But the recipe turned out fine even if we ended up with only one lemon. Had we used two, the marinade would be too tart. We forgot to add some lemon zest, but then again that’s optional.
So here are the ingredients we used and the processes that we followed for cooking this French Herbed Chicken recipe.
1 Kilo chicken thighs (about nine pieces)
Juice of one lemon
Herb mix (equal parts rosemary, thyme, oregano and marjoram)
5 tablespoon Olive Oil
5 cloves garlic
2. Squeeze one whole lemon onto the chicken.
3. Add the herbs. Rub the herb mix onto the chicken. Marinate overnight or for at least five hours.
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Place the chicken thighs in a roasting or baking pan. Add 5 tablespoons of olive oil to keep the chicken from drying. (If you don’t have olive oil in your kitchen, canola or vegetable oil would be fine.)
3. Roast in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour.
The simple technique to getting the chicken cook evenly is to turn the chicken over to the other side after 25 minutes and continue roasting it. That will give you a golden brown color on the skin.
You can cook this recipe along with your favorite side dish. Potatoes, asparagus and carrots are perfect accompaniment for this dish, but we opted to have it as it is. So there you go, our very own home-cooked French Herbed Chicken.
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