Roasted Herb Chicken

 The scent of sage, rosemary and chicken are the perfect perfume to remind you that fall is right around the corner. I have already been unreasonably excited for the season and dreaming of honey crisp apples, pumpkins and all the rich & savory dishes I can create. When I decided to roast a whole chicken, I was excited to put a little extra effort in and brine my bird before roasting. For those of you who aren't familiar with brining meat, this is a wonderful way to ensure your bird is tender and juicy. You can brine all meats and it is easy to do so, but it does require a bit of foresight. A brine essentially consist of a salt water solution and can be seasoned in anyway you would like and really makes a difference in the final product. 

Roasted Herb Chicken

BRINE-In a large container add, 1 gallon water, and stir in 3/4 cup salt, 2/3 cup brown sugar, 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar. Season with 2 tablespoon pepper corns, 2 sage leaves and 1 rosemary sprig. Cover and place in fridge for 2 hours or overnight (The longer the better). 

Season the bird and rub with olive oil and salt and pepper. Place bird on top a bed of carrots & potatoes with some rosemary and sage. You can also stuff your chicken with garlic, lemons and more herbes for added flavor. For a 4 pound bird, roast at 325 for 2 hours checking often. If your chicken skin is browning to quickly, place a tent of tin foil over the breast. 


Roasted Duck Breast


As you may have noticed, I don't blog about meat or even cook it often. I'm a veggies kind of gal and although I will never entirely give up meat, I use it sparingly, and feel my best when I eat a primarily vegetable based diet. I appreciate the animals sacrifice and am a huge advocate of humane animal slaughter and husbandry.

However, man-oh-man, put me in front of anything with duck in it, I'm all over it like white on rice. Peeking Duck, Duck Pho, Duck Salad, Duck Fat Fries, Foie every way imaginable, I could drink Duck Jus by the gallon, its definitely my favorite meat to say the least. My obsession for duck probably comes from my family, mostly my father, who has  cherished it and by default, always ordered it when dining out. It was only natural that when my mother asked him what he wanted for Father's Day dinner, he requested it.  

This is a full proof preparation of muscovy duck breast. The trick is to do a quick sear on the fat and finish in the oven. This ensures juicy perfection and is perfect for medium rare, as it should only ever be enjoyed at. Duck breast is a perfect addition to any meal such as salads, soups, or simply on its own with some greens and starches. Duck is also incredibly malleable to sweet additions, and goes well with pretty much any fruit you can think of. Grilled peaches & apricots is a favorite of mine, but strawberries & cherries also delicious. Be sure to save the excess fat and drippings from this dish, as duck fat is a out of this world flavoring for veggies, eggs, and can easily be turned into a outrageous jus. 


Roasted Duck Breast

3 Muscovy Duck Breast (roughly a half pound each) 

Salt & Pepper, to taste

Lay duck breast on a cutting board. With a proper knife, score the fat side of the breasts in a criss-cross pattern, seasoning with salt and pepper. Heat a cast iron grill pan or any other ovenproof skillet over medium heat. 

Lay breasts fat side down on grill pan and render off fat. Around 5-6 minutes. Reserve excess fat. Turn over for one minute and turn fat side down again and place in oven for roughly 8 minutes for medium rare. Remove from oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Slice thinly and savor!