- 1 free-range chicken, about 1½ kg/3lb 5oz
While it's the traditional Christmas bird, turkey is good to eat all year round, though…
- bunch rosemary
Rosemary's intense, fragrant aroma has traditionally been paired with lamb, chicken and game…
- 3 tbsp olive oil
Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…
- 4 red onions, left whole but peeled and trimmed
- 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
True Balsamic vinegar is an artisan product from Modena, in Emilia Romagna, Italy, and is made…
- 1 tbsp honey
Honey is made by bees from the nectar they collect from flowers. Viscous and fragrant, it's…
Heat oven to 190C/fan 170C/gas 5. Starting at the neck, carefully loosen the breast skin away from the flesh, trying not to tear it, then place a branch of rosemary down the side of each one. Put the rest of the rosemary in the cavity. Season the chicken inside and out, place in a roasting tin, then sit an onion in each corner of the tin. Drizzle the olive oil over the chicken and onions, then roast everything for 1 hr 20 mins.
Meanwhile, stir the vinegar and honey together until the honey has dissolved. When the chicken has had about 40 mins, whip it out of the oven, drizzle the chicken and onions with the vinegar mix, then continue to roast until the time is up. Remove the chicken to rest, turn the onions over and continue to roast them in the oven while the chicken rests, about 20 mins. Serve each person a portion of chicken, a roasted onion and some of the sticky pan juices.
The golden rule to roast chicken…1.5kg chicken will be perfectly roasted after 1 hr 20 mins at 190C/fan 170C/gas 5. It doesn’t matter what you stuff into it, rub or sprinkle over it or put around it, this timing never changes. Remember this and you will always be able to roast a chicken.
Know-how: Adding the glazeAny glaze that contains honey should be applied halfway through the cooking time as honey has a tendency to burn.
Other rulesAlways leave your chicken to rest for at least 15 mins before carving. This will give you a juicy chicken that is a lot easier to carve. For a more succulent chicken, take it out of the fridge one hour before cooking to bring it up to room temperature. This rule applies to any meat you are roasting. Don’t worry about turning or basting your chicken as it roasts. Yes, these can give good results, but are fiddly for the beginner, plus every time you open the oven you lose heat.