Lavender Chicken

Tuesday, I really did make the best slow roasted chicken, using lavender that grows in the parking lot of my building.  I paired it with roasted potatoes with rosemary (also from outside) and some great looking yellow wax beans from my local produce market that I just blanched and salted.  The sauce is made from the pan juices and vegetables that make a base for the chicken as it cooks.  A Provençal Rose such as Bandol is heaven with this!

This chicken takes a while, but is easy once it’s done. I put it in the oven and forget about it, just letting the aroma fill my kitchen. And rather than truss the chicken with string, I just stick a skewer though the chicken to hold in all of the ingredients inside it.

Cynthia’s Herbes de Provençe Chicken and  Sauce

Preheat oven to 325 degrees

For the chicken:
1 whole chicken
2 onions cut into quarters
1 carrot, peeled and cut into 4 pieces
1 stalk of celery, cut into 4
1 lemon.
4 cloves garlic
2 2″ sprigs lavender, if possible.  If not, another teaspoon of herbes de provence
2 tsps herbes de provençe

1Tbsp olive oil
about 4 tsps. salt
about 2 tsp ground pepper
1 8′ skewer

For sauce:
2 tsp flour
1/2 tsp salt or to taste

Put 6 of the onion quarters, the celery pieces, the carrot pieces and 2 garlic cloves in a glass or non-reactive baking pan.  Set aside.
Wash off the chicken, rinsing out the inside also.  Sprinkle 2 tsps salt and 1 tsp pepper on the inside of the chicken.
Zest the lemon with a microplane zester into a small bowl and set aside.  Cut the lemon in half.
Put 2 of the onion quarters, the lemon halves, 2 garlic cloves, the lavender sprigs and half of the herbes de provençe inside the chicken.
Run the skewer through the legs and the bottom of the chicken to close the opening and to keep it closed.
Add the olive oil, remaining salt, pepper and herbes de Provençe to the lemon zest.  Rub this over both sides of the outside of the chicken

Place the chicken, breast side down, on top of the cut up onion, celery and carrot.  Put in the preheated oven for 1 hour.
After 1 hour, turn the chicken over with a pair of tongs.  Sprinkle the 2 tsps flour over the base vegetables.  Cook the chicken for another 20 minutes, or until the breast is brown.  Poke the leg with a knife- if the juices that run out are clear, the chicken is done.

Put the chicken on a plate and cover with foil.  Set aside.

Put the vegetables, flour and juices in a blender jar and blend well to combine.  Taste for salt and add if needed.

Carve the chicken and serve with the sauce.  Delicious!