roast chicken with lemon & herb stuffing

living in london has its ups and downs and the last few weeks have epitomised that – with the heatwave that we have been experiencing, the city has been full of people beaming with joy at the chance to bare their limbs and enjoy the sun. hidden in cooler corners and under trees are those londoners who find the heat that bit much to bear and who are longing for the temperatures to cool.

i’m in the first gang and really am delighted that the weather is so glorious, however at least once a day, when i have to jump on a tube, i feel real sympathy for my cooler weather loving friends. standing (because inevitably you will be) on a hot, humid and smelly tube is no way to enjoy london life.

which is why it is all the more amazing that i decided to crank up the oven and roast a chicken. i had to though – the beautiful label anglais bird i bought via food4london was taking up too much space in my freezer.

i cooked it very simply, rubbing the skin with olive oil, salt and freshly ground black pepper. inside i stuffed it with a mix of slow-cooked onions, breadcrumbs, fresh thyme and oregano from the garden plus lemon zest, juice and seasoning. the chicken was basted with the juices it released and we ate it, sitting in the garden, with asparagus and some of my best broccoli.

the chicken was incredibly flavoursome and the stuffing reminded me of my childhood roast chicken dinners, when both stuffing and bread sauce were obligatory. best of all there were lots of leftovers and the carcass created a wonderful stock.

it was definitely worth creating the extra heat in the kitchen.