Roasted Lemon Chicken with Root Vegetables
I got this recipe from my sister Ellie. She is an excellent chef in her own right and a much better baker than me!
2 small/medium sized lemons, washed
6 cloves garlic
2 ½ teaspoons coarse salt, divided
5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 ½ cups of chicken broth
3 Potatoes, cut into wedges
3 Carrots, cut into ½ inch discs
3 Parsnips, cut into ½ inch discs
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Remove the giblets and any fat from the chicken cavity. Roll the lemons on the counter with your hand to soften, then prick with a fork, going all the way through the rind of the flesh. Cut one of the lemons in half. In a small bowl, mash the garlic with 1 ½ teaspoons of the salt until a paste forms. Rub half this paste inside the chicken and then stuff one and one half of the lemons into the cavity. Add 3 tablespoons of the oil to the rest of the garlic paste and rub the mixture on the outside of the chicken. Place the cut up vegetables in a roasting pan, tossing with the remaining salt and oil, and form a make-shift rack for the chicken to rest on. Place the chicken on top of the vegetables and pour the broth into the bottom of the pan. Squeeze the juice from the lemon half into the broth. Roast for 60-65 minutes, basting with the pan juices halfway through the cooking time, until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh registers 180 degrees Fahrenheit, juices run clear when pricked with a fork, and the drumstick moves easily in its socket. Cover the chicken and let rest for 10 minutes before carving. Serve with the pan juices.
Hydrate! I cannot emphasize this enough! Drink as much water as possible before the fast. Although you may feel you’re about to float away, it will be worth it by the time the fast is well underway. Beware of caffeinated beverages, beer or other alcoholic beverages; they will only dehydrate you. Water or diluted fruit juices are the safest options.
Don’t over-stuff yourself before the fast. For some reason, people seem to think that eating a lot the day before will compensate for not eating on the fast day. This will actually make you hungrier. You are not a chipmunk! You cannot stuff your cheeks with food for later! Eat a proper meal that emphasizes carbohydrates, some protein, and foods high in oils and fats, since they delay the emptying of the stomach, thus prolonging the effects of your pre-fast meal. Consuming carbohydrates (e.g., potatoes, pasta) will be very effective, as they bond with water that your body will make use of during the fast.
Avoid salty or spicy foods. Salt causes a person to feel thirsty despite having a “normal” amount of water, because extra water is required to absorb the extra salt. For this reason, you should refrain from processed foods containing lots of salt, such as pickles or cold cuts. Most tomato sauces, canned fish and smoked fish should also be avoided.
Salads and other high-fibre foods that are so important in one’s normal diet should be de-emphasized for the pre-fast meal, since they travel quickly through the digestive system. Fruit, despite its high fibre content, is worthwhile, since it carries a lot of water in a “time-release” form.