Roasted Chicken with Lingonberries
The first time I tasted lingonberries was during a trip to England. As a child, I traveled a lot to Great Britain and stayed with host families so I could improve my English. There would usually be another international student staying with the host family. One time, I stayed with a Swedish girl. It's been so long I can't remember what her name was, but I do remember that she introduced me to many new flavors. Typically, the students would bring a present that represented his or her culture and country. I would usually bring either chocolates, wine or Champagne. But this Swedish girl brought lingonberry preserves that were delicious. Lingonberries are Scandinavian berries with a flavor reminiscent of cranberries but slightly less tart and sweeter. And like cranberries, I think the preserves go especially well with white meat. If you're preparing your Christmas menu, this lingonberry roasted chicken could be a festive and tasty option for your main course. I roasted a whole chicken, adding the preserves to the marinade and glazed the chicken at the end so the skin turned sweet and crispy.
There's a giant IKEA store near where we live. I sometimes wander in the food area and buy Swedish root beer, delicious sparkling pear drink, Swedish meatballs and of course lingonberry preserves. If you don’t have an IKEA nearby, you can always buy lingonberry preserves online.
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Yields: 4 servings3-4 pound whole chicken
1 red onion, quartered
1 tablespoon kosher salt (or regular salt)
1 tablespoon black peppercorns, freshly cracked
3 cloves fresh garlic, finely minced
1 tablespoon papaya paste (see tips)
½ teaspoon baking powder
4 sprigs rosemary
½ cup lingonberry preserves
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
6 tablespoons butter, softened
1 cup seltzer water
In a mortar and pestle, grind the peppercorns. Add 3 tablespoons lingonberry preserves. Add 3 tablespoons of butter. Mix until well combined.
Clean the chicken thoroughly. Get rid of the fat chunks near the bottom of the chicken. Leave the skin on. Pat the chicken drywith a paper towel.
Season the chicken with 2 teaspoons of kosher salt. Mix the garlic, papaya paste, 1 tablespoon mustard, 2 teaspoons chopped rosemary, lingonberry mixture and baking powder; be sure they're well incorporated. Place the whole chicken on a large tray. Wearing gloves, carefully separate the skin from the flesh without tearing it. It's crucial not to damage the skin of the chicken to keep the meat moist. Spread all the mixture under the skin, in the cavity and on the outside of the bird. Rub evenly. Drizzle with about 1 tablespoon of melted butter. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, preferably overnight. You can marinate the bird up to 2 nights.
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Remove the chickenfrom the refrigerator at least 30 minutes ahead of time to bring it back to room temperature before placing in the oven.
Place the red onion, the remaining rosemary sprigs and 3 tablespoons lingonberry preserves in the cavity of the chicken. Place the chicken in a roaster. Drizzle with a tablespoon of melted butter, then sprinkle with a little salt. Cover just the tip and shoulders with foil so that they don't burn. Add seltzer water at the bottom of the roaster.
Roast for 45 min. Remove the foil.
In the microwave, melt 1 tablespoon butter. Add 1 tablespoon mustard and the 2 tablespoons remaining lingonberry preserves. Baste the bird with the butter mix using a silicone brush. Increase the temperature to 425°F for 15 min to brown the chicken.
Take the chicken out of the oven. Loosely cover with foil (don't entirely wrap it or the skin won't be crispy). Let it rest for at least 10 minutes.
A thermometer should register 165°F in the thickest part of the bird or the juice should run clear when you crack around the thighs.
Serve warm with the drippings at the bottom of the roaster. Garnish with fresh sprigs of rosemary.
I use French, Vietnamese and Indian (citrus, baking powder, papaya paste) meat tenderizers to ensure juicy and moist poultry.
Little reminder on how to make papaya paste: Peel a green papaya. Grind the cubed papaya with seeds in a blender, place about 1 tablespoon of papaya paste per slot in an ice-cube tray and freeze them. Transfer the ice-cubes 3 by 3 into sealable plastic bags and place back in the freezer.
At the end of the cooking time, if it's not golden brown enough, change your oven setting to broil for about 2-3 minutes.
For more poultry recipes, check out the link.Published By: on December 15, 2011.