Six women of varying ages and cultural backgrounds who share a bond not only for our love of the written word, but also for a collective love of food. As such, our dinners are usually nothing short of spectacular and this month it's my turn to host.
The last time I had everyone over I served Roast Loin of Pork, Crash Hot Potatoes and, Aurora's Coleslaw, which, in all its creamy apple and toasted almond glory, is really the perfect accompaniment for any kind of roast.
But this month I have been all over the place with what I want to serve - knowing only that I want my meal to be inspired by the colours, textures, smells, and feelings of Autumn.
Once again, I began thinking about apples and the many ways they remind me of the fall.
I also started thinking about roast chicken - one of my absolute favourite comfort meals - and remembered a recipe I saw once from Chef Michael Smith for Roast Chicken with Apples and Rosemary
I decided to give it a trial run and, oh boy, am I ever glad I did.
On the menu for this month's book club will be a starter of pumpkin bisque.
For the entree I will be serving Roast Chicken with Apples and Rosemary, corn bread, my dad's famous Wild Rice Casserole (recipe to come in the next few weeks), roasted beets, and an Autumn inspired salad (recipe also to come.)
For dessert, I can think of nothing more perfect than Grandma Opal's Apple Pie, with vanilla ice cream.
I think this would also be the perfect Sunday dinner to serve friends and family on a blustery Autumn evening so light the candles, join me at the table, and enjoy!
Starting with Chef Smith's chicken.
For printable recipe, click HERE
Layer the bottom of an oiled roasting pan with three apples that have been quartered and cored, 3 onions that have been peeled and cut into large chunks, 1 head of garlic (cloves peeled), three sprigs of rosemary, salt and pepper to taste ( about a half tsp kosher salt, 1/4 tsp pepper). Toss well and add 1/2 cup of apple cider.
**Cook's note** I didn't have apple cider on hand the first time I made this so substituted 1/2 cup chicken stock. The sauce turns out wonderful either way.
Now it's time to season the chicken.
I added my own touch to Chef Smith's recipe (something he encourages cooks to do) by grinding two Tbsps of President's Choice Roast Chicken Seasoning with 2 tsp kosher salt
|I love this seasoning blend.|
Roast in a 350 oven (I actually roasted at 325 - my preferred heat for roast chicken) until a meat thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the thigh reads 180 degrees, about twenty minutes per pound.
My chicken took about two hours.
Let the chicken rest app 30 minutes.
While the chicken is resting mash all the ingredients in the roasting pan together making sure to get all the flavour off the sides an bottom of the pan. I removed the peel from my apple at this point and prefer my sauce this way, but it is optional.
Meanwhile, slice your chicken and put it onto a platter.
Serve covered in a generous slathering of the sauce and enjoy!
This easy, comforting dish is full of flavour, and straightforward to make.
The perfect meal on a blustery fall Sunday - or for a bookclub dinner with dear friends.
Thankyou Michael Smith for a wonderful recipe that will be a mainstay in my repertoire for years to come.
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