Friday, February 22, 2013

sunday dinner chez Odette!

In my teen we lived in Vernon  a small town in "LEure" on the door of Normandie. Every Sunday we had a lovely meal and very often we had visitors cousins who live in Paris.  The house  was usually very busy on the week End. The Parisians were happy to come and visit the family and happy to  get a bit of country fresh air. Very often we ended being between 10 or 25 at the table .. Naturally in all these meeting food was very important. Sometimes  a uncle, chef in a restaurant in Paris, will cook dinner.I still remember his "soles a la Normande". We had friends from Alsace who will bring all the ingredients too make "choucroute garnie" including the most delicious sausage and hams. Sometimes we will have a fish fry caught the same day by uncle Robert. Can you believe eating fish from the river Seine. if you had fish from the Seine now you probably die in the next 10 minutes! Sometimes it was a rabbit or a roast beef. But I think my favorite  was the Sunday roast chicken . We got all our chicken and rabbit from the farm . On Saturday morning on his way to the local market a friend a farmer will dropped chicken or rabbit my mother will have ordered early. The farmer was such a nice fellow but nobody will ever want to open the door to him because he will go  on talking in the most annoying way. One time we send Merritt (my ex husband) to the door and he stay with the farmer for almost an hour, finally with a glass of wine. when the farmer was finally gone we ask Merrit what they been talking about, we were told they talked about the war but really Merrit had no idea what they had been talking about( the farmer did not talk English).  Merrit said the man was talking a lot too fast for him to understand much of anything. the next Saturday guess who did not open the door to our poor Farmer? my father did. He did enjoyed talking to him in front of a glass of wine.
 I was not very impress at the time with the  Sunday dinner who took always to long when I was ready to go and meet my friends.
 Now I will give anything to go back, in time, just for one day, to the Sunday dinner in my father Vernon
No way to go back  so we have to make the best of today.
And what better way to cook a roast chicken with little roast potatoes pretty much like mamie used to make.
I don't have a farmer who will bring me an farm chicken but at least I can buy the best.  A nice organic chicken
Here is my recipe.


 1 nice organic chicken
6 tablespoons butter at room temperature
2 or 3 rosemary sprigs .
4 or 5 potatoes
2 or 3 carrots
salt. pepper.
green onion
4 or 5 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup of white wine
1/2 cup chicken stock


Prepare the vegetables
peel the carrots and slice them
peel the potatoes and cut in small cubes
"blanche" the carrots for a few minutes.

In a bowl toss the potatoes and carrots with 3 tablespoons olive oil and the remaining of the chopped rosemary

Rinse the inside of the chicken.
Dry the chicken very well
put 2 tablespoons of butter a spring of rosemary and some chopped green onion in the cavity
add some salt and pepper
make a paste with the rest of the butter, some salt and pepper and the chopped rosemary
Introduce the butter paste between the skin and the body of the chicken spreading it around. Rub some of the butter paste on the top of the chicken.
Put the chicken in a large roasting pan and cook in the  preheated oven at 400 degrees F.
Roast for about 15 minutes

Bring the temperature down to 375 degrees F
Add the vegetables around the chicken and continue to cook for 30 to 45 minutes
Check the chicken ounce and a while and toss the vegetables add a little more butter or oil if necessary
The chicken is cooked when the juices run clear when  the thickest part of the thigh is pierced with a knife.
Take the chicken and the vegetables out of the pan
deglaze the pan with the wine and a little  chicken stock
Serve the juice with the chicken and the vegetable


_ you may add some different vegetables  Tomatoes , marinated artichokes, precook fennel, squashes what ever you like
_sorry the last picture is the one of a chicken roasted with only potatoes and that is fine too.. you just will have to add vegetables as a side dish.
_ One of the advantage of this chicken you can prepare it put it in the oven and enjoy your Sunday afternoon not too much work and not very many dishes to clean.
_ sometimes I put 2 or 3 slices of lemon in the cavity lemon is always good to enhance the taste of chicken

Miam miam miam. A table . Bon appetite.

For people who do not know Mamie , Odette is my step mother who raised me and my sister Janine . My mum died when I was 7 years old. She is now very sick after quite a few strokes and the recipe is dedicated to her. Love you mamie

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