Monday, August 03, 2009

Roast Charlottes

One of the mysteries of my cooking life is how the cheap, thin, elderly roasting pan pictured above, and that I use here in France, has a far more effective non-stick surface than the expensive, solid pan I use at home.

First, I roasted a chicken - with butter between the skin and the breast, olive oil smeared on the skin, half a lemon squeezed over, and the hull of the lemon, along with two garlic cloves, placed in the cavity. (Gas mark 6/200C for 30 minutes; gas mark 2/150C for a further 60. It was a 1.7kg bird. The oven here is probably hotter than the settings imply.)

I covered the chicken in foil, and tossed the sliced Charlotte potatoes (washed first in cold water) in the sauce it had left behind, along with a little more oil. The garlic cloves were not tender, so I put those in the pan too, with a couple of sprigs of rosemary. Gas mark 6/200C, for 60 minutes, with the potatoes turned half way through.

The stickiness of the roasting juices and the starch from potatoes that had not been parboiled would, at home, have necessitated a great deal of scraping. Here, the potatoes lifted from the pan easily.

We ate the chicken and potatoes with green beans and mayonnaise - the latter containing the two cloves of roasted garlic.

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