I am going to be honest with you. This is the best roast chicken I have ever had, and my Mom made a pretty awesome roast chicken growing up. But this just takes the cake. Sorry, Mom. I think what did it was the sweet potatoes, their sweetness seemed to ooze into everything in the pan, which went amazingly well with the caramelized flavor of the garlic cloves. Did I not mentions there are garlic cloves? There are a few in here....about 22 of them. Yes, it does sound like a ton of garlic, but after being roasted for a certain amount of time the intense, almost spicy, raw garlic taste fades away and reveals a sweet and soft caramelized flavor. Super addicting. I made a healthy-ish stuffing for the bird too using whole wheat bread, pine nuts, and some other less healthy things like butter and wine. The vegetables in here tasted fantastic, and the chicken cooked perfectly but a little faster than normal. I think it may have been because I cooked it in a metal pan and not a glass one, but I am not entirely sure.....suspicious. Anywho, it was delicious. Jeremy even said it was the best brussel sprout he had ever had. Not the roast chicken, but the brussel sprouts. There are carrots in it too! And shallots! So many nutrients!!!
Roast Chicken & Vegetables
1 Whole Chicken, about 5 lbs, innards removed and discarded
12 Ounces Brussel Sprouts
6 Carrots, cut into roughly 2 inch pieces
2 Heads of Garlic, about 22 cloves
2 Large Sweet Potatoes, peeled and cut into roughly 2 inch chunks
2 Cups Chicken Broth
1/3 Cup Flavorful Red Wine, Syrah is a good choice
1/3 Cup Plus 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1/4 Cup Heavy Cream
2 Tablespoons Butter
1 and 1/2 Teaspoons Salt
1 and 1/2 Teaspoons Dried Thyme
1 Teaspoon Pepper
Pine Nut Stuffing
3 Slices Whole Wheat Bread, cut into 1 inch squares
2 Shallots, diced
2 Ounces Pine Nuts, about 1/3 cup
1/2 Cup Chicken Broth
2 Tablespoons Butter, melted
1 Teaspoon Red Wine
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
1/2 Teaspoon Pepper
1/2 Teaspoon Dried Thyme
Begin by preparing the vegetables. Place the butter and 1/3 cup of the olive oil in a large and deep pan over medium heat until the butter melts. Add the garlic and mix so that it is covered in the oil. Cook for 5 to 8 minutes, or until it begins to become soft. Add the carrots, sweet potatoes and brussel sprouts and stir so that they are mostly coated in the oil and allow them to cook for 5 minutes, stirring once every minute. In a small bowl, mix together the salt, pepper and thyme. Divide the mixture in half and set aside. Add the chicken broth, red wine, heavy cream, and half of the spice mixture to the vegetables and stir until the spices are evenly distributed and an even-colored broth forms. Allow to cook for 5 to 10 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Rub the chicken inside and out with the tablespoon of olive oil. Then rub it down again with the remaining half of the spice mixture. Set it aside in a large roasting pan.
Now it is time to make the stuffing. Mix all of the stuffing ingredients together in a bowl until the bread has absorbed all of the liquids and is soft. Stuff the stuffing inside the bird using your hands.
Remove the vegetables from the heat and use a large ladle to transfer them and the broth to the roasting pan, arranging the vegetables around the chicken. If necessary, add water so that the broth is between 2 and 3 inches from the top of the pan. Make sure the liquid is at least 2 inches below the top of the roasting pan, otherwise it will boil over and onto the bottom of the oven, making everything smokey and unfun. Place in the oven and roast for 1 hour and 15 to 1 hour and 45 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the chicken and the stuffing reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit. If the chicken skin or the vegetables begin to get too dark but the internal temperature hasn't reached 165 degrees yet, remove the pan from the oven, cover it in foil, and then place it back in the oven until done.