Rib of beef
2 sticks of celery
2 sticks of rosemary picked and finely chopped
Season the joint with salt, then peel and roughly chop the veg and place in the bottom of the roasting tray to act as a trivet. Drizzle some good quality olive oil over the joint, sprinkle the chopped rosemary over the meat and place in a preheated oven at 230C – 250C.
Baste the joint frequently with the juices and fat that run out of the meat. Reduce the heat to 200C once the meat has sealed. The total roasting time is 15 minutes per 500g plus 15 minutes, or until the juices run clear.
Once removed from the oven the joint should be rested for 15 minutes before carving.
While the meat is resting, remove the fat and oil from the roasting tray, this is best done by lifting one corner of the tray carefully so the liquid runs to the opposite corner, then simply spoon off the clear liquid. Next get the roasting tray over a high heat and use a wooden spoon to gently work any bits that are stuck to the tray loose, at this point it’s a good idea to add a generous measure of red wine or (my personal preference) port to help “de-glaze” the tray.
Once all the pieces have been worked loose, think about how much gravy you want when finished and add roughly twice that amount of hot beef stock to the roasting tray, bring it to the boil and remove from the heat.
Now strain this through a sieve into a clean saucepan and bring to a boil. Allow the liquid to reduce by half and it should thicken just enough to give a really rich gravy, if it thickens too much just stir in a little stock to thin it down again.
When roasting, the food is cooked with oil or fat either in an oven or on a spit. The joint of meat to be cooked is placed on a trivet in a roasting tray and placed in a hot oven to seal. The temperature is then lowered and the joint cooked through with frequent basting. Alternatively, the joint can be placed on a spit over a heat source and basted regularly.
This is a great way to cook a large joint of meat as it uses only the heat and the fat within the meat to cook and all the excess fat is rendered out of the meat along with some of the natural juices, these juices can be kept and used to make gravy.
It’s always a good idea to use a roasting tray that is deep enough to hold all the ingredients easily. It’s essential when basting that you do not splash fat onto yourself or others or indeed the oven or heat source as this could cause a fire. Remember to drain off the excess fat before making the gravy.
Finally the joint should be left to rest before carving as this will make it easier to carve.
1 whole chicken, best quality you can afford
30g butter, softened
Mixed herbs, finely chopped (should give approx 1 handful when chopped)
1 lemon, zested and cut in half. Zest finely diced
Coppa di Parma (or Parma ham)
Root vegetables (carrots, parsnips, onions)
Heat your oven to 180 C.
This is a beautiful and simple one tray dinner. Start by preparing your chicken – check it has been thoroughly cleaned out internally, trim away any excess fatty skin from the openings. Begin to delicately tease the skin away from the flesh of the breast area, creating a pocket under the skin.
Mix your chopped herbs, lemon zest and some salt & pepper with softened butter. Rub this into the chicken flesh inside the pocket you created by lifting the skin. Also rub it all over the outside of the chicken, covering all of the skin. Next, take your pieces of coppa di parma and place in the skin pocket of the chicken. Place one half of the lemon in the cavity of your chicken, this will help to keep your chicken moist.
Chicken should be roasted for 20 mins per lb plus 20 mins. Your vegetables and potatoes will take about 1 hour to cook, so place the chicken in a large roasting tin and place it in the oven. Now, begin to prepare your vegetables and add them to the roasting tin when there’s one hour of cooking time left.
Peel your vegetables as needed and cut into similar sized chunks. Toss them in a little olive oil (add a little dried herbs if you like) before adding to the roasting tin.
Ensure that the juices of the chicken are running clear, by cutting into the bird with a sharp knife, and then rest for 10 minutes before carving.