One Roast Chicken–Three Delicious Meals

A perfectly roasted chicken is a secret weapon every person should have in their arsenal. Comforting and versatile, it lends itself to impromptu dinner parties and cozy nights at home. This recipe from The Three Kitcheneers is as simple as it gets and couldn’t be more delicious. While the bird is roasting, prepare one of these fall-inspired sides and serve up a meal both satisfying and impressive with little more than an hour’s work.

Simple Roast Chicken

This chicken can be jazzed up with whatever herbs or spices you have on hand. Just stuff them in the cavity and continue with the recipe.

serves 4-6
1 3-4 pound organic chicken, giblets removed
1 bunch thyme
coarse sea salt and freshly ground pepper
2 tbsp. softened butter or olive oil

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line a roasting pan with lots of paper towels. Rinse chicken under cold water and transfer to paper towels. Dry thoroughly. Discard paper towels and insert a rack into roasting pan. If you don’t have a roasting pan or a rack, it’s no big deal, just use a rimmed baking sheet or Dutch oven. Place chicken on top of rack.
2. Stuff cavity with thyme and season with salt and pepper. Rub a small handful of salt all over the skin of the bird, using a gentle scrubbing force, then spread butter to cover skin.
3. Roast for 1 ½ hours, until skin is nicely browned and juices from the thigh meat run clear. When in doubt, cut into the thigh (that’s what the leg is attached to) and make sure it looks cooked through. If not, continue roasting in 5 minutes increments.

Roasted Pear Salad with Maple Vinaigrette

Goat cheese, pears, and chicken is a classic French pairing. When made into a salad, it’s an unbeatable way to jazz up a simple and healthful fall meal.

serves 4
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp. pure maple syrup, grade b
2 firm but ripe pears
½ cup crumbled goat cheese
½ cup dried cranberries
4 packed cups mixed greens

1. Make the vinaigrette: Whisk together oil, lemon juice, and maple syrup until thick. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
2. Peel and halve pears lengthwise. Use a melon baller or small knife to remove the fibrous core. 3. Toss with 1 tablespoon of reserved vinaigrette. Transfer, cut side down, to a small baking pan. Roast in 350 degree oven on bottom rack until beginning to brown, about 30 minutes.
4. Combine cheese, cranberries, and greens in a large bowl. Toss with enough dressing to lightly coat. Serve topped with roasted pears.

Sweet Delicata Squash with Herbed Ricotta

Delicata squash is the highlight of winter squash season—beautiful, easy to prepare, and delicious. No need to peel these beauties, their skin is edible and roasts up into sweet perfection.

serves 4
1 lb. delicata squash, halved lengthwise and seeds removed
3 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 tbsp. minced mix of fresh herbs, such as parsley, marjoram, and thyme
sea salt and freshly ground pepper

1. Slice delicata crosswise into ½-inch crescents. Toss with oil and season with salt and pepper. Spread in an even layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast in 350 degree oven on bottom rack, stirring halfway through baking time, until tender and beginning to brown, about 30 minutes.
2. Combine ricotta and herbs in a small bowl and season with salt and pepper. Serve roasted squash with a dollop ricotta drizzled with olive oil.

Caramelized Brussels Sprouts with Lemon

Brussels sprouts are the most charming of all vegetables. And arguably one of the most delicious. These mini cabbages are caramelized to bring out their sweet side and then brightened up with lemon. An addicting and satisfying combination—you’ll never look at Brussels sprouts the same way again.

serves 4
1 lb. large Brussels sprouts
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
finely grated zest of 1 lemon, about 1 teaspoon, plus lemon wedges
sea salt and freshly ground pepper

1. Trim the stalk end of sprouts to remove any discoloration and peel away wilted outer leaves. Halve lengthwise. Toss with oil, lemon zest, and salt and pepper to taste.
2. Arrange on a large rimmed baking sheet cut side down. Roast in 350 degree on bottom rack, without stirring, until cut side is browned, about 15-20 minutes. Watch carefully as they overcook quickly.
3. Squeeze fresh lemon juice over top just before serving.

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