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Roasted Chicken with Basil Recipe

Don’t be afraid of taking on the task of roasting a whole chicken. This recipe is easy enough to follow, and the result is a succulent, perfectly seasoned chicken that is perfect for a family dinner! Be sure to use a high-quality chicken to increase the taste and, obviously, quality of your dish. This recipe incorporates some of the best tastes of Italy to create the centerpiece of a true Italian feast – no pasta necessary.



3 to 4 garlic cloves, peeled
1/3 cup packed basil leaves
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 chicken (3 1/2 to 4 lbs), rinsed, patted dry, and trimmed of all visible fat
1 cup dry white wine
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon chopped basil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees, and set a roasting rack inside of a roasting pan.

2. In a food processor, combine the peeled garlic, basil leaves, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Keep the machine running while drizzling the olive oil down the feed tube. This will form a paste.

3. Very gently lift the skin of the chicken up from the breast and push the paste under it, then spread to cover the meat.

4. Breast-side up, place the chicken on the roasting rack and tuck the wings under.

5. Roast for about 1-1 1/2 hours, until a thermometer reads 180 degrees.

6. Remove the chicken from the rack and transfer it to a plate, then wrap it in foil. Let it stand while you complete the next step.

7. Make the sauce: pour out the fat from the roasting pan, then combine the wine, minced garlic, and chopped basil in it. Boil the mixture, stirring occasionally to scrape the browned bits off of the bottom, and cook for about 5 minutes (until the sauce is reduced by half). Add the salt and the pepper.

8. Carve the chicken and be sure to remove the skin before eating. Serve the sauce on the side.