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Roast Chicken With Roasted Lemons And Wilted Watercress Recipe

Course: Main Course
Total Time: Under 1 Hour
Skill Level: Easy
Cost: Inexpensive
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 Roast Chicken With Roasted Lemons And Wilted Watercress

Photo by: Johnny Miller

Roasted lemons may sound odd, but they are very good-edible with a lovely flavor.

Yield: Serves 2 to 4 as a main course

  • One 4½-pound chicken at room temperature, wing tips removed
  • 6 lemons, each cut into 8 wedges, seeded, and the central membrane and thick peel tips cut away with scissors
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 large bunches watercress, arugula, or spinach, heavy stems removed (about 5 cups loosely packed)
  • ½ cup chicken stock, fake chicken stock, or sterile-pack
  • ¾ cups olives, such as Kalamata or Niçoise
  • Kosher salt


Heat the oven to 500°F with a rack in the center. Place the chicken in a roasting pan no more than 2½ inches deep. Put in the oven feet end-first. Roast for 15 minutes. Take the pan from the oven and shut the door.

Jostle the chicken to unstick it. Rub the lemon pieces with the oil and place around the chicken in the pan. Return to the oven and roast for 10 minutes. Turn the lemon pieces over. Roast for 10 minutes more. Repeat. Carefully move the chicken to a platter, tilting it to allow any juices to run into the pan. Place the lemon pieces at one end of the platter.

Put the pan on top of the stove over high heat. Toss in the watercress. Stir-fry for about 4 minutes. Spoon the wilted leaves out onto the end of the platter opposite the lemons.

Return the pan to the heat. Add the chicken stock and olives. Cook until the olives are heated through. Add salt to taste. The amount will depend on the saltiness of the olives.

© 2011 Barbara Kafka

Editor's Note

Nutritional information is based on 4 servings and 1/4 teaspoon added salt.


Nutrients per serving (% daily value)

813kcal (41%)
796mg (33%)
58g (90%)
15g (75%)
234mg (78%)
204mcg RAE (7%)
148mg (247%)
199mg (20%)
4mg (24%)

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