Trouble With Toast

Recipe: Chicken with Slow Roasted Tomatoes and Cheesy Grits | February 17, 2009

In the comments to the previous post, there was some discussion about how long it takes to roast a chicken.  That conversation was pretty timely, as I roasted a chicken the night most of those comments came in.  I got the recipe (and slightly adapted it) from Food and Wine magazine, and I gravitated toward it because a) it was roast chicken, and yum; b) it mentioned pairing it with a brut rose, which I had in the house and absolutely love; and c) it was under the category of “wonderful weeknight” or something like that, implying that it could be made fairly easily after a hard day at the office.

The meal turned out fabulously, but it ended up taking about two hours from start to finish, so I’m not sure I agree on the whole weeknight thing.  But, I would definitely make the dish again.  The bird was about three and a half pounds, and it turned out perfectly moist and flavorful (with a salty, crispy skin).  I didn’t follow any specific recipe for the grits; rather, I just cooked up some quick grits in chicken stock and then added some shredded cheddar, salt, and pepper.  For next time, I’ll cut the amount of onions just a bit, and I’ll double the amount of tomatoes–they were THAT GOOD.

  • 8 plum tomatoes, halved lengthwise
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 large rosemary sprigs
  • One 3 1/2-pound chicken
  • 2 white onions, cut into wedges
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine

Preheat the oven to 350°. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss the tomatoes with 2 tablespoons of the oil and season with salt and pepper. Turn the tomatoes cut side down and scatter the rosemary around; bake on the bottom shelf of the oven for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until very soft and starting to brown. Let cool.

Meanwhile, in a roasting pan, rub the chicken all over with 1 tablespoon of the oil and season with salt and pepper. Scatter the onion wedges around the chicken, drizzle with the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast the chicken and onions in the upper third of the oven for 1 hour and 10 minutes.

Increase the oven temperature to 450°. Add the wine to the pan and roast the chicken for about 20 minutes longer, until the onions are well browned and the chicken is golden and the cavity juices run clear. Pour the cavity juices into the pan. Transfer the chicken and onions to a platter; let the chicken rest for 10 minutes.

Set the roasting pan over moderately high heat and add 4 of the tomato halves and 1/2 cup of water. Simmer, scraping up any browned bits and mashing the tomatoes, until reduced by one-third. Strain the jus into a saucepan and season with salt and pepper. Carve the chicken and serve with the tomatoes, onions, tomato jus and grits.  As you can see, I also served with some greens (collard and brussels sprout greens, to be exact), which I merely sauteed in some olive oil and minced garlic.




  1. I roasted a chicken last night; I am sure I had it on the brain as a result of all the discussion here. I shoulda made grits, but I think I will keep that to the experts (ie Southern girls).

    Comment by Lemmonex — February 17, 2009 @ 1:45 pm

  2. Ack! Until the juices run clear?

    The red colorings in the juices turn clear (brown, actually, and coagulate, leaving the clear fluid behind) at different temperatures depending on the kind of bird, its diet, how much exercise it got, etc. The juices turning clear is NOT a predictor of doneness. It is easy to think a chicken is done when it is a much lower temperature than is necessary to kill most of the bacteria, if you are taking it out when the juices run clear. And it’s even easier to wait too long, overcooking the bird.

    With chicken, it’s such a familiar texture that ten degrees overcooked is pretty bad roasted chicken. Why not just get a thermometer?

    Comment by Barzelay — February 17, 2009 @ 5:23 pm

  3. Few things in this life made me happier than cheesy grits. God bless you

    Comment by briankainec — February 17, 2009 @ 7:34 pm

  4. Lem: I promise, if you can stir, you can make grits.

    Barzelay: I have a thermometer. As you know, I try to do my first run-through with minimal changes to the original recipe. And I don’t know about this particular bird’s diet, exercise, or painful childhood, but I do know that it tasted yummy.

    Brian: Yes, cheesy grits do put smiles on faces. You’re welcome. 😉

    Comment by bettyjoan — February 17, 2009 @ 11:10 pm

  5. […] with Miss Lemmonex, and then I came home to be interviewed by the AJC.  In February, I perfected roasted chicken and granola, and Tom Colicchio redeemed himself to me.  In March, I finally wrote about the […]

    Pingback by 2009 – Full Throttle, Full Circle « Trouble With Toast — December 29, 2009 @ 1:28 pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: