5lb whole chicken
6 cloves garlic (3 minced, 3 peeled whole)
1 large onion
4-6 springs of rosemary
4-6 springs of thyme
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
Preheat oven to 450.
Chop leeks and onion. Place in the bottom of your dutch oven along with three peeled garlic cloves. Be sure to reserve 1/4 onion to stuff the bird!
Remove giblets (if they are in the cavity of the bird) and rise in your sink. Make sure to save them to make homemade stock later! Pat chicken dry with paper towels/dish towel.
Using 1/2 of the herb butter, gently lift the skin and “stuff,” reaching as far as you can toward the neck of the bird without tearing the skin. Try placing most of the butter on top of the breast as the leaner white meat needs more fat to not dry out.
Squeeze the lemon into a separate container and stuff the cavity of the bird with the lemon rinds, thyme, rosemary and 1/4 of the chopped onion. Tie the legs of the bird together with kitchen twine to keep the legs from drying out.
With the remaining 1/2 of the herb butter, rub the outside of the bird liberally, over every surface. Top with the lemon juice, salt, pepper and three gloves of garlic and place bird into the dutch oven on top of leeks and onion.
Cook (uncovered) for 20 min, then reduce head to 350 and continue to cook approximately 20 minutes per pound. If the skin looks like it is starting to burn, put the lid on your dutch oven. Once the internal temp of the chicken has reached 165, remove from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes to allow the juices to reconstitute.
*Herb butter may be purchased in the grocery store, but I prefer to make mine since it’s so easy. All you need is 1/2 of organic unsalted butter, 1tsp minced rosemary, 1tsp minced thyme, 1 tablespoon chopped parsley and 1 glove of minced garlic. Soften the butter in the microwave then mix everything together and you are done!
Notes: If you have a different sized chicken, just scale the ingredients accordingly (CrossFit pun!) Nothing in this recipe needs to be exact, so add as little or as much of everything as you want. As long as the chicken has enough butter, I assure you it will turn out great. If you are not a leek fan, or don’t have them, just add an extra onion to the bottom of the pan. Leeks tend to be slightly milder and sweeter than onions, so when they caramelize at the bottom of the pan with the melted herb butter they are AMAZING!