Source The English Kitchen
|one 1.75 kg (~4 lb) chicken||whole chicken|
|to taste||black pepper|
|one, roughly chopped||onion|
|one, roughly chopped||carrot|
|1 stick, roughly chopped||celery|
|1 leek, white part only, chopped||leek|
|a splash||olive oil|
|1 leaf||bay leaf|
1. Pre-heat the oven to 190*C/375*F. Remove any giblets from your chicken and save for another day. Wipe your chicken dry and then rub it all over with the softened butter and season it liberally inside and out with some salt and pepper
2. Place the chopped vegetables in the bottom of a thick roasting tin with some olive oil. Place on the hob over medium heat and cook and stir with a wooden spoon, cooking for about 5 minutes to slightly colour the vegetables. Remove from the heat. Add the spring of sage and the bayleaf. Place the chicken on top of the vegetables and roast for about an hour and 15 minutes, or until the chicken tests done. (The leg bone should move easily in it's socket and the juices should run clear) Remove from the oven, place on a cutting board, and let sit for 15 to 20 minutes (lightly cover with some foil) before carving.
3. If you like you can add some chicken broth to the vegetables in the pan and place it over the burner and bring it to a boil. Allow to boil for several minutes before straining into a large jug. Discard any solids in the strainer and then skim off any fat from the juices in the jug. Return them to the pan and cook and simmer for a good 10 to 15 minutes, to reduce somewhat. Spoon these juices over the sliced chicken when you serve it. You can also thicken them with a bit of flour and water to make a thick gravy.