We’ve all had days like that! On a day when you can’t spend a lot of time in the kitchen, can’t be checking on things, can’t be doing multiple steps, a crock pot can be your best friend.
2 heads of garlic
1 purple onion
3 sprigs of thyme
1 tbsp summer savoury
1/2 tsp paprika
1-2 potatoes per person
I like to buy organic chickens. I know they’ve been treated well, and have had a good life, and if I can find them, I look for pastured chickens, who have a full and varied diet. I’m lucky that I can get great chickens at my local butcher — the one I’ve used in the pictures is about 5 lbs/2.25kg.
Bottom layer in the crock pot: peel the cloves of garlic, put them in a flat layer on the bottom of the pot.
Next layer is the chicken. Cut the lemon into quarters, then each quarter in half, and stuff the cavity with them. Add the sprigs of thyme in the cavity. Put the chicken in the crock pot, breast side down. This will help keep it moist, as the juices that develop through slow cooking will baste and saturate it.
Next, rub summer savoury over the back, wings, and legs of the chicken. I also sprinkle paprika on it, because crock pot chicken doesn’t develop any browning, so the paprika helps to add colour.
Around the chicken place potato quarters. I like to use Yukon Gold potatoes, because they’ve got such a nice rich colour to them.
Cover the chicken with slices of purple onion.
Put the crock pot on low heat, and go away. Mine took about 5-1/2 hours to bring the internal temperature of the chicken to 165F, the safe eating temperature. Always use a thermometer to gauge the readiness of your poultry.
Take it out of the pot to rest before carving and serving. You’ll see that you’ve got some lovely juices in the bottom. You can take those juices and garlic cloves and smash the potatoes for a delicious side dish.
Because I was going with a local theme, I served a local wine: Chateau des Charmes 2009 Aligoté.
Contributed by: Pat Anderson, Digiteyes, the Epiglutton