Garlic Butter Roast Chicken & Puerto Rican Pork
My idea of the perfect Sunday: wake up, go for a run, watch football, and cook. I like to search for recipes or inspiration online during the week, and then spend a few hours prepping meals for the upcoming week. I don’t need to tell you all how much time this saves or how easy this will make your evening meals – every blogger has beat that to death. But what I love about Sunday prep is that I can put on some music, and enjoy a little solo time in the kitchen. Zen.
This past Sunday, I found myself roasting a chicken and veggies in the oven, setting up a pulled pork in one crock pot while both chicken and beef were in the other. Oh, and I fried up some bacon for breakfasts this week.
These two recipes I found are delicious, and can be the base of many weeknight meals. For example, the pork can be served in tacos, stuffed in a sweet potato, used as a topping for nachos, etc. And this chicken is to. die. for. The butter mixture keeps the meat so moist and flavorful it should be illegal.
Garlic Butter Roast Chicken
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- Coarse salt (sea salt or Kosher salt)
- Fresh ground pepper
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 2 navel oranges, 1 zested, both cut into wedges
- 2 teaspoons finely copped fresh thyme, plus a few sprigs
- 1 (4 lb) whole chicken, cavity and body rinsed and patted dry
- 2 onions, peeled and cut into wedges
Preheat oven to 450˚.
Mash garlic and 1 teaspoon of salt into a paste (instructions here). Combine garlic paste, butter, orange zest and chopped thyme in a bowl. Gently separate skin from the breast of the chicken, and rub half of the butter mixture under the skin on each side. Rub some of the mixture on top of the breasts and legs, then massage into the skin. Season with pepper.
Fill the chicken cavity with 2 orange wedges, 2 onion wedges and thyme sprigs. Place chicken on a roasting pan and tuck wings under (if you have a roasting rack, use it). Tie legs together with kitchen twine, but don’t lose sleep if you don’t have any.
Scatter remaining oranges and onions around the chicken, dot with some of the butter mixture and season with fresh ground pepper.
Roast for 30 minutes, then brush some more of the butter mixture on the breast and legs. Rotate pan, and roast for 15 minutes more. Brush some more of the butter mixture on the bird, cover with a foil tent and return to the oven for an additional 15 minutes. Repeat for an additional 15 minutes, remove foil cover and roast for another 15 for an hour and a half total cook time.
Let the bird rest, then carve and devour. I served mine with roasted butternut squash, but almost any winter veggie would work here.
Puerto Rican Pork
- 1 (2-3 lb) pork loin, trimmed of most of the fat
- 4-5 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1/2 tablespoon salt
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 4 oranges, juiced
- 4 limes, juiced
Rinse your pork and pat dry – no one likes slimy pork. Poke holes in the pork loin and stuff garlic in each hole. Combine remaining ingredients and pour into your slow cooker. Place pork in slow cooker, turning to coat in the marinade. Cook on low for 8 hours.
Using two forks, shred the pork and return to the slow cooker for an additional 10 minutes to heat through. Serve over sliced avocado, or use to make quesadillas, tacos or over a salad. The possibilites are endless….