RECIPE: 8-Hour Chicken

The heavy slumber that comes from the summer heat covers me like a warm blanket. I realize I haven’t cooked a big meal for myself in a while. My solo summer dinners (excluding sinful take-outs) have “conveniently” been consisted of cheese platters, smoked salmon salads and herb omelettes. Super quick and hassle-free.

You know when you feel the flu approaching towards you from a distance? You get little clues like itchy throat and randomly aching joints? One of those nights as I was mumbling, “Shit! Flu… in summer?How inconsiderate!” I came upon the Youtube clip of model Miranda Kerr talking about her signature dishes. I’m not a fan but she grabbed my attention with these three magic words: 8 Hour Chicken. It felt like it was the perfect answer. What is garlic and a cross to a sinner, roasted chicken was to the flu. Or at least that’s what I believed in my hungry delirium.

Already having most of the ingredients in my pantry and no plans for the whole day of Saturday, it was set. Got myself a chicken, organic no less, and planned to start cooking at noon to have my deliciously healing dinner at 8.

I gotta tell you. It was one of the most satisfying meals I’ve ever had. I’m sure my friend Ceyda will agree as she joined me that night, which resulted in us shamelessly – and rather shockingly – finishing the entirety of a whole chicken.

I don’t think it was the recipe (no offence Miranda), but the process itself. The best analogy I can come up with would be the difference between a one-night-stand and a romantic night with the person you’re in a serious relationship with.

The recipe called for patience, for I had to wait for almost a full day to have the first bite. It required attentiveness for I needed to baste it every hour. Compromises had to be made as the top handle of my pot’s lid melted and my hard-working electric oven burned the fuse which had to replaced by an electrician who overcharged me for making a trip on a late Saturday afternoon.

So when I finally settled in to eat, even though I obviously knew it wasn’t going to be the best thing I would ever have in my life, it sure tasted like it was. Because when you personally invest your time, energy and care into the meal you prepare for yourself and/or others, it becomes all the more rewarding than making a phone call for it to be delivered to your door. I believe this basic principle is valid for most things in life.

Saturday not only reminded me how meditative and healing cooking can be, but also how much we actually end up enjoying doing the things we are too lazy or impatient to do.

Long story short, I seriously recommend this very slow-roasted chicken that will inadvertently make you slow down as well… and that can only be a good thing.

PS: I didn’t get sick so joke’s on the potential flu! Ha!


Miranda’s slow-roasted Chicken

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 whole organic chicken
  • 3 onions
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • 1 lemon
  • 4 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon Bragg’s Liquid Aminos (substitution: soy sauce)
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 2 teaspoon Himalayan rock salt
  • 1 sprig rosemary

METHOD:

  1. Preheat the oven to 300°F / 140  °C / Gas 2.
  2. Rinse the chicken and place it in a large oven-proof pot with a lid.
  3. Peel the onions and cut them into quarters. Peel the garlic.
  4. Place some of the onions and garlic inside the chicken. Be generous – it has amazing health benefits, from maintaining cholesterol levels to aiding digestion.
  5. Pour the Bragg’s Liquid Aminos (or soy sauce) into the pot, then squeeze over the juice of the lemon.
  6. Sprinkle the salt and turmeric over the chicken skin.
  7. Tuck the rosemary sprig into the pot, put the lid on and place in the oven.
  8. Slow-roast for eight hours, basting with the juices every hour.
  9. Take the lid off for the last 30 minutes of cooking to crisp.

ADDITIONAL NOTE: Ceyda used the juices from the chicken to make a side-dish of rice which accompanied it extremely well.

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