I Didn’t Believe Roast Chicken Could Taste So Good

Roasted chicken is one of those common dinner staples in our home. We have it probably once every 2 weeks, easily. We actually never had it when I was growing up, which is weird, because my brother and I were frequently exposed to some relatively daring meals as far as kids’ dinners go… Like shrimp scampi, oysters, cottage cheese pancakes, and liver. But no roast chicken.

Roast chicken atop salad
Roast chicken atop salad with tangy mustard vinaigrette

The first time I had roast chicken at all it was dry and flavorless. But then I had really good roast chicken and it was a revelation. Buttery, crispy, juicy and just so amazing and flavorful. A treat for all of the senses. I could not get enough. Well that was 30 years ago, and I didn’t really think it was possible to top plain buttery roast chicken. I mean, it’s just so good, right? All the versions with the

Roast Chicken
Crispy, salty, juicy goodness!

spice mixes and the curries and yogurt with lemon and garlic are delicious, but come on… They aren’t BETTER, right?

Enter a fennel roast chicken… Mind blown. Did you ever smell something cooking and it is just SO AMAZING you just want to inhale the whole thing? And it’s roast chicken. And… This is perplexing to me, truly stupefying… It just does not make any sense how incredible it tastes, because it has NO butter or oil of any kind in it, Wait what? Yeah.
This is a meal that literally makes me giddy I love it so much.

I find it so wonderful atop a mixed green salad with a few boiled small potatoes and cucumber tossed in, drizzled with some tangy mustard vinaigrette (with a little extra grainy mustard thrown into the dressing).

The skin on the chicken is part of the gorgeous end product, it comes out crispy and thick with salt and seasonings, making it almost like croutons.

Fennel roast chicken

1 whole chicken
2 Tbsp kosher salt (if you are watching your salt intake, use only 1)
1 Tbsp fennel seeds
2 Tbsp herbes de Provence

Preheat oven to 425. Buzz together the spices in a spice grinder (or food processor) until ground up, but not fine like a powder. Cover chicken inside and out with the spice mixture. And let sit a t room temperature for an hour. Cook at 425 for 1 hour and 10 minutes. Turn off the oven, crack the door and let let for 15 minutes. The let rest on your cutting board, covered for another 10 minutes. Carve and serve.

2 comments on “I Didn’t Believe Roast Chicken Could Taste So Good

  1. Have never tried fennel seed. Can’t wait to try it this way. Thanks for another great recipe.

  2. Two really important things about Roasted Fennel Chicken. First: everything Adrienne said about this recipe is exactly as she describes it. I made it a few nights ago and could hardly believe a few simple ingredients and no oil of any kind could produce such an unbelievably delicious roast chicken. Second: if you are thinking you are not a big fennel fan you might try the recipe using a little less fennel and a little more herbes de Provence though it may be that the recipe amounts exactly as posted might just change your mind about fennel. Thank you Adrienne for sharing your awesome recipes as well as giving your readers a glimpse into your beautiful, very full, deliberately lived daily life.

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