Mix-and-Match Roast Chicken

Use this customizable recipe to design the perfect Sunday supper.

Try Moroccan-spice roast chicken with onions, carrots, oranges and dried apricots.

Photo by: Ryan Liebe

Ryan Liebe

Try Moroccan-spice roast chicken with onions, carrots, oranges and dried apricots.

1. Prepare the Chicken

Bring one 3 1/2- to 4-pound chicken to room temperature, about 30 minutes. Pat the skin dry with paper towels. (For extra-crisp skin, refrigerate the chicken, uncovered, overnight; bring to room temperature before roasting.) Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

2. Choose Your Seasoning

Heat 4 tablespoons butter or olive oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Stir in your seasoning mix (choose one below) and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Let cool slightly; set the skillet aside.

Curry:

  • 2-inch piece ginger, thinly sliced 

  • 1 tablespoon Madras curry powder 

  • Pinch of Kosher salt 


Maple-Chipotle:

  • 1/4 cup maple syrup 

  • 1/2 chipotle chile in adobo, chopped, plus 2 tablespoons sauce from the can 

  • 1 bay leaf 


Mustard-Pepper:

  • 1 tablespoon mustard powder
  • 1 tablespoon coarsely ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon brandy

Cajun Barbecue:

  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

Moroccan Spice:

  • 2 tablespoons ras el hanout
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Pinch of Kosher salt

Lemon-Rosemary:

  • 3 sprigs rosemary plus 1 tablespoon chopped leaves
  • 5 smashed garlic cloves
  • 6 wide strips lemon zest
  • Pinch of Kosher salt

3. Choose Your Vegetables and/or Fruit

Prepare up to four of the following (3 cups total).

  • Garlic cloves, unpeeled
  • Carrots, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • Onions, cut into wedges
  • Celery, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • Leeks, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • Fennel, cut into thin wedges
  • Lemon or orange, cut into wedges (up to 1 cup)
  • Apple or pear, cut into chunks (up to 1 cup)
  • Dried fruit (up to 1/4 cup)

4. Roast the Bird

Brush the seasoned butter or oil all over the chicken on a large plate; season generously with salt and pepper. Tuck the wingtips under the body and tie the drumsticks together with kitchen twine.

Stir your vegetables and/or fruit (except any dried fruit) into the reserved skillet; set the chicken on top. Roast in the oven until the skin is golden and a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh registers 165 degrees F, about 1 hour, adding any dried fruit halfway through. (Tent with foil if the chicken is browning too quickly.)

Transfer the chicken to a cutting board, pouring any juices from the cavity back
into the skillet. Let the chicken rest at least 20 minutes, then carve. Transfer the vegetables to a platter using a slotted spoon.

5. Make the Sauce

Adjust the consistency of the pan juices: Add a splash of water to loosen, or cook over medium heat to thicken. Whisk in 1 to 2 tablespoons cold butter or Dijon mustard over medium-low heat, if desired. Season with salt and pepper. Serve the chicken with the vegetables and sauce.

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