Moroccan Lemon and Herb Roast Chicken

This is my newest favourite way to cook a chicken…

Stuffed with herbs and Moroccan lemons.

It tastes wonderful and the meat is always juicy and tender…

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Mmmmmmmm  Yum!

Moroccan lemons are lemons that have been preserved using salt.  They are very easy to make, but you can also purchase them.

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I use the recipe from here to make mine, but if you want to purchase some, I can recommend these:

The lemons add both a salty tang and a lemon flavour to the chicken.

This recipe is 100% AIP compliant.

Moroccan Lemon and Herb Roasted Chicken

serves 4-6

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  • 4-6lb whole chicken
  • ½ Moroccan preserved lemon
  • 2 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil
  • sea salt to taste.
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 4 sprigs fresh sage
  • 4-5 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 4 sprigs fresh parsley

The first thing you need to do is to take half of a preserved lemon and rub it all over the skin of the chicken.  Then stuff the lemon up inside the cavity.  Drizzle the skin of the chicken with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt.

Place the garlic cloves, bay leaves, half of the rosemary, sage, thyme and parsley inside the cavity.

Chop the remaining herbs finely and sprinkle over the chicken.

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Sit the chicken, breast side up, in a roasting tin, and roast in a 350°F  oven for 20 minutes per lb until the chicken is cooked and the internal temperature is at least 165°F when measured with a meat thermometer.

Allow the chicken to rest for 10 minutes before carving and serving.

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I served this chicken with some rosemary roasted root vegetables, steamed broccoli and lemon and thyme braised leeks.

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Shared at:  Mostly Homemade Mondays, Thank Goodness it’s Monday, Fat Tuesday, Tuesdays with a Twist, Waste Not Want Not Wednesday, Gluten Free Wednesdays, Allergy Free Wednesdays, Paleo AIP Recipe Round Table #69, Gluten Free Fridays, Pure Blog Love, Awesome Life Friday, Natural Family Friday, Real Food Friday, Simply Natural Saturday, Lets Get Real, Savouring Saturdays, Simple Saturdays, Hearth and Soul Hop

Simple Roast Chicken

I roasted 2 small chickens (both around 3lb each) for dinner (actually, only one was used for dinner, the other was saved for lunch the following day).

I don’t mess with my roast chicken too much, I like to keep it simple, so that you can appreciate the chicken flavour.

I stuff the cavity with lemon, garlic and herbs (I use parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme – kind of like the song “Scarborough Fair“.  When I was living in the UK, I visited Scarborough many times.  I never went to a fair while I was there though.)

Simple Roast Chicken

Serves 6

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  • 1 chicken 3-4lb in weight (preferably pastured or at least free-range/organic)
  • 1 tbsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp dried rosemary
  • ½ dried thyme
  • ¼ tsp dried sage
  • ¼ cup coconut oil – melted
  • zest and juice of ½ lemon
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • sprigs of fresh herbs (I use parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme

Preheat the oven to 190°C/375°F.

While it is heating up, mix together the salt and all the dried herbs.  Squeeze the juice of the lemon all over the skin of the chicken, then rub well with the coconut oil.  Sprinkle the salt/herb mixture all over the skin, seasoning it well.  Do not forget to season the cavity.

Now stuff the cavity with the fresh herbs, garlic and the squeezed out lemon rind.

Place the chicken on a rack in a roasting tin and sprinkle the lemon zest over.

Roast in the preheated oven for 20 minutes per lb plus an extra 20 minutes until the juices run clear and the internal temperature in the thickest part of the thigh has reached 82°C/180°F when measured with a meat thermometer.

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Remove from the oven, cover with a clean cloth and allow to rest for 30 minutes before carving into portions.  I like to take the wings off, the legs off (which I then separate into a thigh and a drumstick, and then remove the breasts whole.  I cut each breast into 2 or 3 pieces depending on size.

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This can be served at once as a roast dinner, or it can be cooled and used for lunch or another meal.

Make sure you save any pan drippings as these will be used to make a simple gravy to serve with your chicken.

Simple Gravy

This is the gravy that I almost always make when I am roasting meat whether it is chicken, pork or beef.  The process is exactly the same no matter what meat you use.

This recipe is not only paleo, it is also AIP friendly.

If you are not cooking a roast, and are cooking a steak or organ meat for example, you could de-glaze the pan with bone broth or vegetable cooking water to provide some “meat juices”.  In this case, I would simply make the gravy in the skillet to save on washing up!

This recipe is a good way to include bone broth into your diet!

Simple Gravy

makes around 2 cups

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  • 1 onion – sliced
  • 1 clove garlic – crushed
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 cups meat cooking juices (if you do not have enough, you can add vegetable cooking water or bone broth to make up the difference)
  • 2 tbsp tapioca starch
  • sea salt to taste

Melt the coconut oil in a small pan and add the onion and garlic.  Cook slowly until the onion is tender and well caramelized.

Now add the meat juices and extra liquids as needed.  Simmer for 5-10 minutes, then mix the tapioca starch with a little water.

Add the starch to the pan and simmer until thickened.

Taste, season with salt and serve at once.