Weekend food not only tastes different to midweek suppers, but it also comes with distinctive, oven-roasted aromas that tantalize the taste buds with the promise of rich rewards yet to come. I’ve been contemplating exactly what sets the two apart and my conclusion is one simple ingredient – time!
No weekend is quite complete without a traditional roast, so let’s talk about everyone’s favourite bird, the chicken. Roast chicken recipes have for some time now been the most popular on Google search, but there’s been a shift of affections. This economical family favourite has been replaced by none other than the latest search for breakfast trends. What a shocker! Yes, The Chicken has been knocked off its proverbial perch as Numero Uno, but I’m here to campaign for our feathered friends and to reinstate the famous rooster back to its rightful place.
Monday to Friday breakfasts are mostly gulp it down, on-the-trot meals. Distinguishing weekday mornings from Saturdays is undoubtedly the welcoming sizzle of bacon. Etched in my mind are childhood memories of ‘salted’ air, wafting down the hall, enticing Saturday loafers into the kitchen for a traditional breakfast, Full-English style.
Our Sundays however, were a complete pendulum swing, with no time for breakfast, leisurely or otherwise. The entire family was hurriedly shuffled off to church on empty stomachs, and with ferocious teenage hunger pangs gnawing at your core, wolfing down a couple of additional communion wafers to quell the rumble, seemed like a good alternative. Needless to say the arrival home, with no Sunday lunch preparations yet underway, dashed all hope of speedy relief. Several hours of torturous waiting loomed ahead as these were the days of old school cooking. There were literally more pots than hob plates to cook on, with each pot representing a different vegetable, starch or both. The oven was reserved mostly for roasts. Gravies were strained, thickened and served in porcelain boats, which at this point proved to be the undoing of the starving masses. Admittedly, Sunday lunches were always epic, as too were the mountainous stack of dishes!
Fast track 30 years to the age of instant. Thankfully there’s renewed hope on the horizon for Low-fuss meal-seekers, the Sunday lunch club and generally, anyone who’s short of time but in desperate need of mouthwatering dinner solutions. Enter the All-in-one-Roast. Pure genius, I think. If you prefer chilling, kicking back and spending more leisurely time with your feet in the upward position than doing hard time in the kitchen, then this recipe is for you.
An all-in-one roast is essentially everything on one oven tray and as in Jamie Oliver’s coined phrase, ‘Shove it in the oven’. My Spanish roast chicken doesn’t require much in the way of effort or shoving, but is a quick and easy assembly of flavoursome ingredients that’ll deliver a succulent and delicious dinner.
Rather than being reserved for special occasions or weekends only, this roast is simple enough for relaxed midweek suppers. The key is without a doubt the spicy marinade. As with most marinades, an overnight marinating time is always preferable as the flavours really intensify, but when pushed for time, my chicken gets a quick dunk and then it’s straight into the oven. No Spanish dish would be complete without the distinctive spicy-sweetness of chorizo sausages, so that’s included as well. Served with wedges of citrusy limes and you have a feast of colour and gutsy flavours that’ll satisfy diners, the cook and dishwashers!
Want the recipe? Click here.