For me, the smell of chicken roasting stems back to my childhood. Not sure if Mom cooked lots of chicken, or if I just loved it so much, but whenever I smell chicken I think of my Mom. When I lived far from home and was feeling homesick, I'd open a jar of poultry seasoning and be transported over time zones and provinces, and back into my Mom's arms. That probably sounds silly, but at the time the smell was a comfort, and I needed all of the comfort I could get, seeing as I'm a total Mamma's girl.
Seemed fitting that on this particular night, my Mom was coming for dinner. Now that we live just a few blocks away from each other, I don't have to smell the poultry seasoning to have her close....she really IS that close. Sometimes I have to pinch myself of the fact. We're lucky to have each other and I never take our relationship for granted, for I know that back when I was homesick for her, she must have been missing her little girl too.
Roasting chicken is really super easy. The better quality chicken you have, the better it's going to taste. I got my little bird from Pine View Farms, just outside Saskatoon. Local is better, no? I chopped lemon and onion and garlic and put it inside the cavity. In a small bowl I combined coarse salt and pepper, some dried thyme and rosemary, and even some dried lavender from my garden. And sage, must have a little sage. There is a little pocket under the chicken breast skin, so I stuffed the herb mixture there. Sprinkled some on top too. I let it roast for an hour at 350*F, then I took it out and nestled some baby potatoes, chopped carrots and red onion around the chicken. I put some chicken stock in to keep things moist. Covered it up, roasting for another hour, stirring the vegetables around every now and then. The last ten minutes I took the cover off so the skin can get crispy (chicken skin is the best!). Let it rest for 10 minutes before slicing it up. The pan juices make the vegetables so full of flavour and the the meat nice and tender because of the liquid in the roaster. Heaven on a plate. And my mom beside me too. Best Sunday dinner.