Look at that fabulously crispy skin.
And moist breast meat. Normally I don't like white meat, but this recipe turns out juicy breast meat every time. Too bad the organic chicken was rather flat-chested or there'd be a lot more breast meat to enjoy.
My recipe was adapted years ago from Glamour Magazine's "engagement chicken," which was an adaptation from Marcella Hazan's "More Classic Italian Cooking." It was an OK recipe, but a little bland. So I added Judy Rodgers' "The Zuni Cafe Cookbook" method of salt rubbing the chicken. Add in lots of lemon juice and garlic and rosemary. Roast some potatoes in the same pan to soak up the juices. And it's become one of my and lil' sis' favorite dishes.
The original recipe was dubbed "engagement chicken" because an editor at Glamour passed the recipe on to her assistant, who made it for her boyfriend. He proposed a month later. Two other engagements resulted from that chicken recipe.
I passed on my recipe to several of my friends who were waiting for marriage proposals. They didn't make the chicken, but got the proposals and married anyway.
Once, when my mom had asked what my friends were up to, I jokingly mentioned passing along the recipe and why. She was so upset! Something about how I'm passing along all my luck to others. I'll never get married now! If you couldn't already tell, my mom is just a tad superstitious.
I don't know if this chicken really has all that much power. I think it's more that baking a whole chicken signals a sense of "homeyness," so if a man were already so inclined, this would nudge him over. I have yet to bake this for a "man."
I make my salt, pepper, lemon basic baked chicken when lil' sis comes home because she loves it and I love her. I baked it when cousin Q's dad sent over a whole chicken and asked if I would make it for his little brother for dinner. I make it when I find a whole chicken on sale for less than $3. So no, I don't save this recipe for only special occasions or to tempt someone to propose.
While my dad appreciates that my mom cooks well, he didn't marry her because she can cook. Yes, it certainly helps, but my dad taught me long ago to eat what's placed in front of me. When my Chinese half-uncle lived with us for a while, after we called him to dinner, he'd look to see what we're having. If he didn't like it, he wouldn't sit down to eat. Never do that, my dad taught me. Appreciate the time and effort that my mother made to cook dinner each night for us. While some dishes were loved more than others, we always appreciated the cook more than the food.
Who do you cook for? What are your specialties? And if any of my recipes inspires a proposal, do let me know. ;)
1 year ago today, 8 random things about me.
2 years ago today, random musings about food, family, and etiquette.