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Salami Roasted Chicken

January 17, 2007

Chicken and veggies

I have roasted a fair number of chickens in the past year, and I’m always looking for something a little different from the traditional herbs-butter-lemon method. I think I have found it. I would never have thought of roasting chicken with another kind of meat in it (well, other than in a turducken kind of way) but as I perused my cookbooks, trying to find something new, I happened across Jamie Oliver’s “fantastic roast chicken” recipe.

Jamie Oliver does not use salami. He uses prosciutto, but I didn’t have prosciutto. I had salami, so I thought I’d just run with it. Add in a bag of pre-cut root vegetables from Trader Joe’s, a couple potatoes and carrots, and voila–a roast chicken dinner. With salami.

Salami Roasted Chicken

  • 1 roasting chicken, about 4 lbs.
  • 1/2 c. butter, softened
  • about 8 thin slices of salami, diced
  • 1 large clove of garlic
  • zest from half of one lemon, and the lemon, halved
  • 1 tsp. dried thyme
  • olive oil, salt, and pepper

Preheat the oven to 425F.

Mix the diced salami, garlic, zest, and thyme into the butter, created a nice squishy mixture. You’re basically making salami butter. Mmm, appealing, huh?

 salami butter

This is going to go under the breast skin of the bird. Using your fingers, and maybe a small spoon, separate the skin from the breast, being careful not to tear it, and shove the butter salami mixture up in there. Then shove the lemon halves into the bird’s cavity, drizzle a little olive oil over the top, and use a basting brush to coat the chicken with the olive oil. Put it into the oven for about 20 minutes.

While the bird is cooking up, cut up a few carrots and a few potatoes, and some other root vegetables, like turnips, or yams, or even squash. You could throw in some cauliflower and broccoli if you like, too. Put them all in a bowl, and add some olive oil, salt, and pepper. Toss it all to coat it up nice and good.

After the chicken has been cooking for 20 minutes, take it out of the oven, and add the root vegetables to the pan. You can use a fork to lift up the bird, and get the vegetables all covered in chicken juices. Rest the chicken back into the pan, on top of some of the veggies if you like, and put it back in the oven, probably for another 40 minutes to an hour, depending on the size of the chicken. You might want to check on it every now and then; if the breast or thighs start to brown too much, put some tented tin foil on the browning parts.

Sadly, I don’t really have a proper roasting pan, which is pretty silly considering how often I roast chicken. And I ended up with something close to 2 pounds of root vegetables, so it didn’t all fit very well in the pan I was using. All in all, it turned out fine, but it did make me realize that it’s about time I got me a roasting pan.

I used the zest of the entire lemon in my salami butter mixture, and the chicken ended up really, really lemony, so you can cut back on that, if you want. I might also consider adding some more diced up salami into the bird’s cavity. Overall, it was pretty durned good, though. Could it have been otherwise? I mean, come on: It’s a roast chicken with salami in it.

The roasted bird

Don’t forget, of course, to make stock with the chicken carcass! I forgot to save my carrot peelings, so I ended up just throwing in some onion and garlic skins, and one random dried pepper that was in our onion bin–spicy stock could be interesting…

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