16 February 2010

I like roasting chickens in a rotisserie, but I felt like doing something a little different this month. I got this recipe from my favorite recipe website, RecipeZaar. I made a few changes; here is my amended recipe.

Greek Style Roasted Chicken

1 (2½ lb.) roasting chicken, gutted, rinsed, and patted dry
1 tbsp garlic-flavored olive oil (or 2 cloves garlic and regular olive oil)
2 tsp oregano
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp garlic powder
2 cups chopped fresh spinach
¼ cup crumbled feta cheese
1 slice whole wheat bread, cut into small pieces
¼ cup sliced olives
¼ cup melted butter

Preheat oven to 325°. Brush chicken with oil. If not using garlic flavored oil, cut the garlic cloves and rub over the skin before brushing with oil. Combine oregano, garlic powder, and salt. Rub onto chicken. Combine spinach, feta, bread, olives, and butter. Slip fingers in between skin and breast, and lightly stuff the pockets on both sides. Lightly spoon stuffing into main cavity and neck, if desired. Place in broiling pan, breast side up. Roast for approximately 1½ hours, or until meat thermometer reads 160° when inserted into thigh, and juices run clear.

Makes 4 servings.

Nutrition Info:
Serving Size: ¼ of chicken and stuffing
Calories: 302
Fat: 25g
Sat. Fat: 8g
Cholesterol: 82mg
Sodium: 191mg
Carbs: 2g
Fiber: 0g
Protein: 18g

This was very tasty chicken. I am not a huge fan of stuffings; I usually prefer to make a dressing on the side, but this one really gave the chicken lots of flavor. The original recipe for the stuffing included ham and pine nuts, but I omitted them and added sliced olives instead. Make sure you don't add salt to the stuffing; with the feta and the olives it is already a bit on the salty side.

The stuffing before going into the bird. So pretty!

The bird going into the oven. I tried roasting some red potatoes alongside the chicken, but that didn't work so well. I tossed them with oil and Penzey's Greek Seasoning and placed them all around the chicken. Even though the chicken cooked for at least an hour and half (if not two), the potatoes were still quite hard when the chicken was done. This surprised me. If anything, I thought they would get overdone. So if I try it again next time, I will boil the potatoes for a few minutes before adding them to the roasting pan.

A note on the cooking time: The recipe says an hour and a half, but that is just an estimate. The only way to make sure poultry is sufficiently done is to use a thermometer. Poultry should be served at no less that 160°. I use a probe thermometer that has an alarm on it. I put the probe in the dark meat because it takes longer than the breast. In this case, when the dark meat was done, I checked the temp on the stuffing and it was only at 130°. Make sure your stuffing is up to temperature too, because it can carry the same harmful bacteria the chicken does. So I put the chicken back in for a few minutes until the stuffing was 160°.

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