Roast Chicken with Watercress and Lemon Salad Recipe

A filling watercress meal
Yield: 6    Preparation Time:     Cooking Time:
A delicious, easy to make, roast chicken main meal served with watercress in a tasty walnut oil sauce.


6 pound roaster chicken
5 heads garlic, separated into cloves, unpeeled and crushed
3 sprigs fresh rosemary
4 lemons, halved crosswise
½ cup olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper

For the salad;
¼ cup walnut oil
12 bunches watercress
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Recipe Instructions

Preheat the oven to 375F.

Prepare the chicken.
Remove the giblets from the cavity and any visible clumps of fat. Dry the clumps of fat on paper towels and set them aside. Wash the chicken inside and out under running water and dry it thoroughly with paper towels.

Sprinkle sat and pepper into the cavity and pour in a spoonful of olive oil. Stuff a handful of garlic and rosemary into the cavity and squeeze in the juice of the lemon along with the lemon halves. Brush olive oil all over the chicken and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Set it up in a casserole dish with the breast side up.

Flatten the reserved chicken fat and lay them over the breast along with the crushed garlic and the remaining rosemary. Squeeze over the rest of the lemons and place the lemon halves into the casserole dish.

Cook the chicken.
Place the casserole dish, covered, in the lower third of the oven. After an hour, remove the cover of the casserole dish and turn the heat up to 400F. Continue roasting and let the chicken brown. Total cooking time will be roughly 1½ hours. Remove the chicken and place it on a serving platter. Place the chicken back into the oven which is now turned off and leave the oven door ajar.

Make the sauce.
Drain the juices from the casserole dish through a sieve and push the garlic with a ladle to remove any juices from it as well. Skim the fat off the surface of the strained liquid and whisk in the walnut oil and season to taste.

Make the salad.
Place the watercress into a large bowl and pour over the sauce. Toss well to ensure the watercress is well coated.

Arrange the watercress around the chicken on the serving platter and drizzle over any remaining sauce.