Sunday, April 27, 2014

Roasted Chicken and Fresh Salsa

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We Filipinos love our chicken.  It is the pride of the party.  We served it fried as most kids would loved or roasted, which is a more sophisticated way of cooking it.  Some became successful entrepreneurs by roasting chicken, take Baliwag and Andok's for example.  Nowadays, there are so many chicken rotisserie in the Philippines.  They are everywhere. Mostly, you can find them in a hole-in-a-wall type of place, restaurants and would you believe that even some push carts on our street are selling roasted chicken.

I've tried marinating the whole chicken in a Filipino style marinate, that is soy sauce-type based.  This taste much of adobo and found that the soy sauce is over empowering the taste of the chicken.  I tried herb and dry rub type of flavoring the chicken and inserting softened butter in its skin.  This really works for me.  I like the nice subtle hint and aroma of the herbs which does not over empower the flavor of the chicken and how the butter keeps the chicken so moist.  This time, I want to try another type of marinate.

My mom bought a whole chicken yesterday and ask me to roast it for our Sunday lunch.  I decided to stuffed it with lemon, garlic, onion and lemon grass.  Then I would tuck some softened butter under its skin.  The bad news, I run out of butter and lemon.  I went to the grocery outside our village but they run out of my favorite butter and the lemon is nowhere to be found.  Okay, change of plan.

I want something different to flavor the chicken so I checked out our fridge and found this bottle of mustard sauce by McCormick.  Okay, I think I could add this to my chicken and so I did.  I combined the mustard sauce, dried oregano, paprika, garlic powder, salt, black pepper and honey and mix them until I formed a paste.  I spread it all over the chicken, in and out and stuffed the chicken with garlic, onion and lemongrass and pop it in the oven for an hour and a half.

To served the chicken, I remembered this restaurant, el Pollo Loco, I was inspired the way they served their chicken.  Their chicken was served with fresh tomato salsa.  The salsa really goes well with the chicken so I decided to serve my roasted chicken with fresh tomato salsa.

Ingredients

1 whole                              Chicken
salt
4 teaspoons                         Mustard Sauce
2 teaspoons                         Paprika
2 teaspoons                         Garlic Powder
2 teaspoons                         Dried Oregano
1/2 teaspoon                        Salt
1/2 teaspoon                        Black Pepper
1 teaspoon                           Honey
1 head                                 Small Garlic, we cal it native garlic in the Philippines
1 head                                 Onion, quartered
5 stalks                                Lemongrass
Oil for basting

Salsa
5 pieces                                Tomatoes, finely chopped
1 head                                   Onion, finely chopped
1 teaspoon                             Chopped Parsley
1/2 teaspoon                          Dried Oregano
salt to taste
pinch of dried chili (optional)

Procedure

Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius.

Clean the chicken and lightly season the inside and outside with salt.

Combine mustard, paprika, garlic, oregano, salt, pepper and honey until a paste is formed.  Rub this all over the chicken, inside, outside and under the skin.

Stuffed the chicken with garlic, onion and lemongrass.  Tie the tip of the legs with kitchen twine.  Pop in the oven and bake for 30 minutes.  Baste the chicken and lower the oven temperature to 190 degrees Celsius.  Bake for another hour.  Baste the chicken every 30 minutes.

For the salsa, simply combine everything.  Make this an hour before the you serve the chicken and place it inside the fridge.  I find the combination of hot roasted chicken served with cold salsa somewhat interesting on the palate.

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