For  marinating and basting:

2TBSp lemon juice

100g PLAIN(NATURAL) yoghurt

1 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp garam masala

1 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp chilli powder

1 TBSp fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated

5 garlic cloves, crushed

¼ tsp red  food colouring (optional)

whole chicken

salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Mix the yoghurt, lemon juice, spices, ginger, garlic and food colouring, if using, in a large, deep bowl. Using a sharp knife, carefully make gashes across the chicken a few times through the thickest parts of the breast and legs.

Slather the marinade all over the breasts and legs. Then place it breast-side down in the bowl, cover and leave to marinate in the fridge for at least 6 hours but overnight preferably.

When ready to cook the chicken, preheat the oven to 180C. Take the chicken out of the marinade and place it breast-side up in a roasting tin. Smear any marinade remaining in the bowl over the chicken, season with salt and pepper and cover loosely with aluminium foil.

Roast in the oven for 1½ hours, basting every so often and removing the foil after an hour.( I had to cover the legs with foil though as it was burning)

After 1.5 hours, remove it from the oven and test to see if it is cooked by inserting a small sharp knife into the thickest part of the bird. I do it around the groin area of the chicken and then press down a bit – the juices should run clear. If the juices are not running clear, then return to the oven, testing it again every 5 minutes or so, until fully cooked. Once cooked, cover with tin foil and leave to rest for 15 minutes. This will allow the chicken to become more juicy and the temperature in the bird to even out.

Once it has rested, remove the tin foil and serve with roast potatoes, rice or naan, salad and minted yoghurt









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