roast chicken

Immune-boosting, health-giving, soul-food roast chicken

In the darkest of January days, the sleet falling outside, we need to nurture ourselves - mind, body, spirit, and of course what we choose to cook - for ourselves and for others - can also nurture that feeling.

Making something good, healthful.

Something that soothes but also that adds so much natural immune-boosting, digestion-friendly, anti-oxidents in one meal ... today, it's this roast chicken.

Roast chicken is a soul-food, a nourishing, soothing, happiness-inducing food.

There's also something about the time it takes to cook that feels right, in these slower times of year, where we hunker down a little and take a little time to cook something good.

It goes without saying but I'll say it anyway - you can't have soul food from an unhappy hen, so choose organic, free range chicken, with a happy life. A chicken's life needs to be honoured too so use every scrap - make stock when you've finished with the meat.

Using all of our ingredients - meat, fish or vegetable - and avoiding food waste is a key part of our overall health and wellness.

So, organic roast chicken for the soul. 

Every ingredient in this plays a part in providing these health benefits:

boosts the immune system

promotes heart health

anti-inflammatory (great for the joints in these winter months)

aids digestion

can help to reduce blood pressure

Every ingredient is chosen for their health benefits, and also taste benefits - which of course then also aids overall health by the pure enjoyment of our food too.

For this marinade you just need the following (super-immune-boosting) ingredients:

a thumb sized piece of ginger, grated

another thumb-sized piece of turmeric root, grated (if you can't find it, just add 2 teaspoons of turmeric powder)

a good big garlic clove, squashed and minced, and one garlic clove squashed and put inside the cavity of the chicken

1 lemon, half squeezed into the marinade and the other half cut into two quarters and put into the cavity

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

a small pot of natural yogurt, about half a cup

2 teaspoons olive oil

Mix all the marinade ingredients together and massage into the chicken - and do this with love!

We need love in our cooking and taking a couple of minutes to honour the chicken, massage in the added health-boosting marinade, will all make for something extra special.

Leave the chicken to marinade for a couple of hours or overnight and then roast.

I use my beloved remoska - it's a small electric oven - but on this occasion so small it burnt the edges of the chicken.

Rachel Redlaw The Food Healer Roast Chicken
Rachel Redlaw The Food Healer Roast Chicken

But hey - it still reduces waste in electricity heating a huge cavernous oven for one chicken - AND that small space means it steams and cooks and remains beautifully moist.

It takes an hour and a half in the remoska, so probably similar in your oven - just make sure to test it's done and cooked through completely - the easiest way is by putting a knife into the leg and checking the juices run clear.

Rachel Redlaw The Food Healer Roast Chicken
Rachel Redlaw The Food Healer Roast Chicken

(Note on the remoska: do look it up HERE. It's not a slow cooker, it's just a tiny, economical electric oven. The initial outlay is quite a lot, yes, but I've used mine several times a week for over 15 years now, so it does end up in cost-per-use - ha, I nearly put cost-per-wear - very economical, without even factoring in the lower electricity/gas costs).

And then just enjoy your soul-food, health-providing roast ... I like it with a rice salad full of herbs and lemon, or with traditional roast vegetables.

Use the leftovers in all the creative ways you can - HERE's some of my favourites.

Rachel Redlaw The Food Healer Roast Chicken

Make stock from the leftovers and bones.

Make the whole experience one of nurture, thoughtfulness, love, sensuality. 

Yes I do find the act of cooking healthful food for my loved ones, beautifully, mindfully ... sensual - it indulges so many senses to choose to do this.

And this is a power-punch of immune-boosting ingredients to stave off all the winter colds too.



Thai-style roast chicken - sort of gai yang

There’s so many reasons for choosing to cook what we do every night for dinner – often it’s planned, or something needs using up, or it’s just what you fancy.

But tonight … tonight I chose to cook this purely and simply because I wanted to chop it up.

Yup. I just really wanted to chop a whole chicken bones and all with my cleaver and see if I could do it ‘Chinese style’ rather than neatly carving it.  And that is the reason we are having roast chicken tonight.

Oh … and because I have some cucumber dipping sauce left over from the weekend I think will go well with it.

So, easy delicious roast chicken.  Just put into a bowl – or straight into a remoska if you also have one (I love mine – plus my oven’s on the blink):

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder gai yang Thai roast chicken

1 tsp salt

2 tsp sugar

1 tsp white pepper

1 tsp ground coriander

6 drops doTerra lemongrass essential oil OR

1 stalk of lemongrass (outer tough part removed, cut into a few pieces + bashed with a rolling pin)

Zest of a lime

4 tbspn fish sauce

2 tbspn oil

Mix it all together and rub over and into the chicken (if using lemongrass stalk just throw it in the roasting pan).

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder gai yang Thai roast chicken

Then cook until done! It takes about 90 minutes.

And then the exciting bit! I looked at a few videos and read some instructions and attempted to chop it all up.

Definitely the fun bit!

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder gai yang Thai roast chicken

Serve with rice and sweet chilli sauce and cucumber sauce if – like me – you have some to use up.

The Tiniest Thai Rachel Walder gai yang Thai roast chicken

Any day is better for being a roast chicken day …