butter roasted chicken & spring asparagus

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Eating perfectly skin-crisped oven roasted chicken always makes me feel strangely luxurious and nourished like a queen. There are few dishes as profoundly satisfying after a long day or easier to prepare.

While baking a whole chicken can be a demanding project for a weeknight, roasting a few breasts or thighs takes less than an hour. Choosing bone-in and skin-on happy chicken for this is key since the meat will be exceptionally tender, juicy, and flavorful.

Chicken skin creates a magical force field that protects the delicate moisture from drying out of the meat, and if you stuff butter underneath, it transforms deliciously into this…

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The asparagus came on a bit early this year, and that’s pretty exciting if you’re into that kinda thing – and I am – especially when it’s roasted with fresh garlic, lemons, olive oil, white wine, salt, and pepper. I consulted the tomes to find a foolproof technique for these beauties and settled on the Joy of Cooking’s Roasted Asparagus as my guide.

asparagus

 

Butter Roasted Chicken

2 local/organic/free-range chicken breasts

1 – 2 tbsp butter, divided between breasts

1 tbsp organic olive oil

1/2 lemon, juiced

1/4 cup white wine

2 cloves garlic, sliced

salt + pepper

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Evaluate the size of your chicken breasts and using your best judgement stuff an “appropriate” amount of butter under the skin. Whatever that means to you will be fine. Salt and pepper the top and underside of the breasts well. I like a good amount of pepper. In a small bowl, mix the rest of the ingredients together and pour into a glass baking pan. Place the chicken in the pan and drizzle a bit of the liquid over the top using a spoon. Bake for 15 minutes and then baste the chicken with the pan juices. Allow to roast for another 15 minutes and remove. Using a knife, cut into the thickest part to check the color. Pink means it is not ready. Check every 5 minutes after that until done. Total cooking time can vary from 30-45 minutes depending on size and thickness. You can also use a meat thermometer to make sure the temperature of the thickest part reaches a safe 165 degrees.

 

Lemon Garlic Asparagus

 1 lb young, tender asparagus spears

1 tbsp organic olive oil

1/2 lemon, juiced

1 tbsp white wine

4 cloves garlic, pressed

several lemon wheels

salt + pepper

Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Mix all ingredients (except for asparagus and lemon wheels) together in a bowl and pour into a shallow pan. Toss the asparagus in the mixture to coat well. Spread out in the pan and lay lemon wheels on top. Roast for 6 to 8 minutes, stirring once while cooking.

 

Smoked Paprika Yogurt Sauce

1 cup Greek yogurt

1/2  lemon, juiced

1 tsp smoked paprika

2 cloves garlic, pressed

salt + pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients together and spoon lovingly over your roasted asparagus. This sauce recipe was inspired by Smitten Kitchen and turned out. so. so. good.

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