A Lemony Roast Chicken that Brings Back Memories of Tuscany

An early food memory for us: pan-roasting a chicken while staying at a house in the hills of Tuscany. The chicken was infused with fresh rosemary we snipped from rosemary bushes growing prolifically around the property. The memory has influenced how we like to cook chicken today: with rosemary, garlic, extra virgin olive oil, and maybe another ingredient … like fresh lemon juice.

“It sounds so simple, and it is: nothing more than chicken, olive oil, rosemary, lemon, and garlic,” Saveur magazine editor James Oseland writes in the book The New Comfort Food (Chronicle Books, 2011), which includes the lemony roast chicken featured here. It’s our kind of dish. (Click here to see the recipe.)

Chef Evan Kleinman first served this chicken at the famed Los Angeles restaurant Angeli Caffe. (The eatery closed recently.)

“It turned out to be everything her customers were craving — honest food prepared with minimal fuss,” Oseland says.

A whole chicken is cut into pieces and then marinated for an hour in olive oil, rosemary, lemon juice, garlic, and a peeled, chopped lemon. (Our Everyday oil would be a fine choice.) The chicken is roasted in a 475 degree Fahrenheit oven for about 40 minutes, or until cooked through. That’s it.

Yet, for us, it brings back those pleasant Tuscan memories.

Bon appétit,

Your friends at California Olive Ranch