seriously good roasted chicken stuffed with curried basmati rice

cooking minette's stuffed roasted chickeni imagine if you’re anything like me (and not a vegetarian), your mouth will be watering just by looking at the image of this incredibly delicious whole roasted chicken stuffed with curried basmati rice. let me assure you the actual dish is by far more delicious than this picture can even convey. it is as comforting a meal as it looks-the chicken meat moist and tender, the soft rice full of flavor, just spicy enough, with an occasional bite of delicious crunchiness  (my favorite part). the best thing is that this roasted chicken is so much easier to prepare than it looks. not only that, you can easily play with and adjust the ingredients to please your palate and change it up once in a while-because you know once you make this you will do it again and again. the original idea for the dish came from a delicious version my mother in law makes containing lots of raisins-which if you like a sweet and savory dish is a great option. not being a big fan of raisins, i use mushrooms and peas (or other cubed vegetables such as bell peppers and zucchini) instead. it’s most important to choose a good roaster (preferably organic) chicken, and to roast it for a good long time. let’s get going, shall we? it’s that busy(er) time of year!

ingredients for whole roasted chicken stuffed with curried rice:

cooking minette's curried rice stuffing

  • 1 whole roaster organic chicken, cleaned, washed, and patted dry
  • 2 lemons
  • sea salt & freshly ground pepper (to taste)
  • extra virgin olive oil (about 1/4 cup) or vegetable oil of choice
  • (at least) 2-3 tbs good quality curry powder (adjust amount to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 cup cubed mushrooms (in this case crimini)-( you can also substitute with 1/2 cup raisins and 1/2 cup currants)
  • 1 cup green peas (frozen is fine)
  • 1 cup basmati rice, washed in a bowl until the water runs clear
  • 1 large shallot, finely minced
  • 1 medium onion, finely minced
  • 1-1.5 cups good home made chicken broth (or water)

cooking minette's whole roasted chicken

method:

  1. sprinkle the inside and outside of the chicken with salt and pepper, then mix about 1 tsp of curry powder with 1 tbs of oil and 1-2 tbs of lemon juice and rub evenly all over the chicken.
  2. heat about 2-3 tbs oil in a heavy pot or deep skillet, then add shallots, onions, and mushrooms and fry for about 5-7 minutes on high while stirring. add sea salt & cracked pepper, curry powder, cumin, and turmeric, fry for another minute or two. add rice and about 1 cup (or slightly more) of water (or chicken broth). allow the mixture to come to a boil  stirring once or twice carefully, then reduce the heat and simmer until all the liquid has been absorbed. the rice will not be cooked but will have softened, add peas and combine well. taste and adjust seasoning.
  3. place chicken in baking dish, slice up a lemon with the skin on and place a few slices under and around the chicken. stuff the chicken with the rice mixture with any remaining mixture around it in the pan. drizzle 1/4 cup broth (or water) evenly over the rice, then cover the rice area only lightly with foil. roast in a 375 degree oven for at least 75 minutes and up to 90 minutes. remove the foil about 20-30 minutes or so prior  to removing from the oven in order to get the rice crispy on the top.

 

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cooking minette’s lasagna dinner!

why is it so hard to decide what to cook for dinner? even though i actually enjoy cooking, i often find it so hard to choose our menu-and my family is not much help! when i ask them for ideas they rarely come up with any good suggestions or agree with one another, for that matter. one will feel like a light simple dinner while the other is super hungry, or one will ask for a dish the other vehemently dislikes-or better yet, they ask for the impossible-complicated dinners that need hours to prepare or ingredients we don’t have available.sound familiar? thought so. i was completely out of ideas yesterday when i hesitantly asked my “consumers” for suggestions. to my surprise, there was consensus: lasagna! i realized it had been ages since i’d made an actual lasagna. even though i try hard to avoid it (for obvious reasons), it’s one of my favorite dishes, and even the thought of it makes my mouth water. much to my relief (and with a good dose of excitement), dinner was decided-not the brown rice noodle vegetarian kind (which is quite good too), but the real thing-with a good home made bolognese sauce smothered in creamy béchamel! this is by no means a light dinner-i kept my portion on the smaller side (maybe) and enjoyed (understatement) it with a large bowl of salad. such a comforting dinner. Continue reading

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