Peri-Peri Roast Chicken
The Stuffing . . .
1 cup couscous
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
2 teaspoons dried thyme, or 3 sprigs fresh thyme, chopped
Juice of 1/2 lemon, squeezed, flesh reserved
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup warm water
The Chicken . . .
1 (1.5–2 kg) whole chicken
4 tablespoons macadamia or extra-virgin olive oil
1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1 cm-thick circles
3 zucchini, trimmed, halved crosswise, and cut lengthwise into 1 cm-thick pieces
3 Spanish onions, quartered
5 garlic cloves, crushed and finely chopped, plus 4 whole peeled garlic cloves
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
2 teaspoons chilli flakes
Preheat the oven to 190ºC.
To make the stuffing, place the couscous in a large bowl. Use a mortar and pestle to crush the coriander and fennel seeds into a fine powder and add them to the bowl with the couscous. Add the thyme, lemon juice, olive oil, and warm water and mix well. To stuff the chicken, hold the bird so that the cavity is facing upward, which makes it easier to spoon the mixture in. Fill the bird with the couscous. Use your hands to squash the stuffing down. Plug the end with the reserved juiced lemon half.
Pour 2 tablespoons of the oil over a roasting pan and set the chicken in the centre of the pan. Surround it with the sweet potato, zucchini, and onions. Place the whole garlic cloves around the vegetables and sprinkle with a pinch of salt and pepper. Using a knife, cut three slashes into the chicken legs, as this will allow them to cook at the same time as the breast.
In a bowl, mix the chopped garlic, paprika, chilli flakes, and the remaining salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons of oil. Pour the mixture over the chicken and use your hands to coat the entire surface. You can also use a brush, but I find hands are much easier—just wash them well when you’re done.
Roast the chicken for 1 1/4 hours. To check if it is ready, cut in between the leg and the breast. If the juices that run out are clear, the chicken is ready to be devoured. Spoon the couscous stuffing from the cavity into a dish and serve it alongside the chicken. ” pps 110-111