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That first picture is me last night. I was enjoying Halle Barry’s show Extant (which is pretty good, even though there is never any food involved!). My dog in the background was watching my youngest daughter cooking dinner. She is 16 and enjoys cooking. I have never “made” my girls cook, but I have always encouraged them to. I mean the way to a guy’s heart is through his stomach, right??? Married my older daughter off at age 20 to a great guy, so I must be doing something right! That one makes a mean strogonoff!

My younger daughter definitely has more passion for cooking. I coach her through things, but she started with Rachel Ray’s 30 Minute Meals for Kids cookbook (Available from Amazon.com – Makes a great gift! That’s how we got our copy). She started sniffing around the kitchen when she was 9 and has progressed from there. So when my 16 year old asked if she could cook dinner last night, I told her “Go for it!” She has graduated from the kiddie cookbook to using any that I have available. Last night she took a look at what meats we had available and then perused my MANY cookbooks. She came up with what looked like a delicious recipe for Roasted Chicken with Meyer Lemon-Shallot Sauce, from my Sunset Essential Western Cookbook (Also available through Amazon.com, and also a gift I received from my wonderful sister and her husband).

We’re California natives in this house, so what better dinner than chicken doused with fresh lemon from my neighbors tree (Thanks Jamie!!!) served with fresh local corn on the cob. Oh yeah, we had mashed potatoes too, because they’re my daughter’s favorite side dish! This dinner rocked!!!! Kudos to the chef!!!

Roasted Chicken with Meyer Lemon-Shallot Sauce

Warning: This recipe takes a bit of time! 2 hours too cook, At least 3 hours to cure chicken

1 whole chicken (4-5 pounds)

1 tbsp salt

2 medium Meyer or regular lemons

2 1/2 tbsp olive oil, divided

1 1/2 tsp dried thyme

1 lb shallots, unpeeled

1 cup reduced chicken broth

1/3 cup dry white wine (It was cute! My daughter was puzzled at the idea that dried wine existed!)

  1. Remove giblets, pull off and discard lumps of fat, and pat chicken dry. Loosen skin of breast and thights and work some salt under the skin. Rub remaining salt all over chicken and in cavity. Chill, uncovered at least 3 houurs and up to overnight. This makes it more flavorful!
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Finely shred zest of lemons. Slice 1 lemon; juice half the other and reserve.
  3. Pat chicken dry inside and out. Rub zest under skin and inside cavity. Rub chicken all over with 1 tbsp olive oil and the thyme. Put the lemon slices in the cavity.
  4. Put chicken in a roasting pan breast side up. Add unpeeled shallots around chicken and drizzle with remaining 1 1/2 tsp olive oil, turning them to coat.
  5. Roast chicken, basting with pan juices every 30 minutes, cooking until 170 degrees when thermometer is inserted in thickest part of breast or 180 through thickest part of thigh, 1 – 2 hours (remove shallots aftter 1 hour and allow to cool). When done cooking, tip chicken so juices from cavity pour into roasting pan. Remove chicken to cutting board, cover with foil an allow to rest.
  6. Meanwhile, time for the sauce! Pour pan drippings into food processor or blender. Trim tops from shallots and squeeze soft insides into processor/blender. Add chicken broth and wine. Pulse until smooth.
  7. Pour sauce back into roasting pan. Cook over medium-high heat scraping any browned bit of bottom of the pan.Cook about 10 minutes. 
  8. Carve chicken and serve with sauce. Delishousness!!!!
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