Middle Eastern stuffed roast chicken
Try this roasted Kangaroo Island chicken with a Middle Eastern stuffing, served with asparagus salad and sweet and sour baby onions.
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- 150g coarse cracked wheat 2 tbsp pinenuts, toasted 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil 1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 garlic, peeled and sliced
- 1 tbsp butter
- 50g raisins or sultanas
- 1 tbsp sherry zest of an orange
- 2 tbsp chopped parsley
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp allspice
- 1/4 a preserved lemon, finely chopped
- salt and pepper
- 2.2kg Otways Kangaroo Island chicken* or use a good free-range/organic variety
- sea salt
- freshly ground pepper
- butcher's twine
Kangaroo Island chickens grow larger than the average and they taste sensational - a great turkey alternative because of their size.
For the stuffing
In a pot over medium heat, cook the onion and garlic in olive oil until soft and lightly golden. Add the cracked wheat, 1 1/2 cups of cold water and a pinch of salt. Bring to the boil, reduce heat and cover. Cook for 10 minutes.
Remove from heat and stir in butter. Meanwhile, cover the raisins with boiling water and allow to soak for 10 minutes before draining. Pour in the sherry and allow to soak for a few minutes. Put the cracked wheat and sherry soaked raisins into a bowl. Add remaining ingredients, seasoning to taste with salt and pepper. This can be done a day before and kept in the refrigerator.
For the chicken
Pre-heat oven to 190C.
Sprinkle the inside of the chicken with a little salt and pepper. Stuff with the cracked wheat and truss the chicken with the twine. Gently work two fingers between the chicken's skin and breast so you can place one tablespoon of butter on each side. Season well with salt and pepper, drizzle with a little extra-virgin olive oil and place on a rack in a roasting pan.
Place a few extra dots of butter on top of the chicken and put in the oven for 20 minutes. Reduce the temperature to 175C and continue to roast for a further 50-60 minutes, basting the chicken occasionally.(Depending on size, allow 20 minutes cooking per 500g.)
Once cooked, remove from oven, cover with foil and rest for 10 minutes.
This can be served hot but is equally good warm or cold.