Sunday Lunch: A summery alternative to a roast dinner
During the summer we all seem to be busier than ever at weekends, with family days out, clubs and activities dominating. In the heat I don't exactly feel like making a roast, but Sundays to us are still sacred and it's nice to have a special meal to make it feel like a proper Sunday! This type of summery alternative to a roast dinner is something we make quite a bit. It's really adaptable: feel free to change up the spices and the vegetables! Even without spices, it'll still be delicious and is so easy and much quicker than a full on traditional roast dinner.
Ready to cook this summer-ready roast dinner? Let's get stuck in!
What you'll need:
- 1 small roast chicken – the smaller it is the faster it roasts!
- 1 pouch (or 2 if there are more than 4 of you) of microwave brown rice
- Olive oil for roasting, extra virgin for drizzling
Vegetables (adaptable, but we used these!):
- Broccoli, 1 head of
- Asparagus, bunch of
- Carrots, about 4
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Pinch cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ginger
- Greek or natural yoghurt
- ½ crushed clove garlic
- Pinch of salt
- Slug extra virgin olive oil
- ½ teaspoon spice mix (above)
- Preheat oven to 225. Untruss (remove string and let the wings and legs free) bird and pop in roasting tin.
- Mix spices. Drizzle oil over the bird and sprinkle half the spices on too. Roast on high for 20 mins then turn down to 180C. Roast for a further 40-60 mins, checking that it isn't burning. To see if it's done, tip it and see if juices run clear from the cavity. Also wiggle the legs – are they coming free easily? If yes, it's done. Let it rest for 30 mins.
- When the chicken is almost done, chop veg (chop broccoli stalks into small chunks, florets in half, carrots into slim diagonal pieces, leaving asparagus whole) and toss in oil and ½ remaining spice mix.
- Roast veg for about 25 mins, and when done, add rice (no need to microwave first). Toss well and pop back in the oven for 5 mins.
- Make the yoghurt sauce by mixing grated garlic into yoghurt, adding the last of spice mix, and seasoning, with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil too.
- Carve the rested chicken, and serve alongside the garlic yoghurt sauce and veggie rice.