Cypriot Roast Chicken with Tomatoes & Lemon

Cyprus

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This is one of my favourite recipes from Cyprus. It’s easily made at home and was available to buy as a take-away dish on the island, which I often did when I was busy. Think Mediterranean flavours with the citrus tang of lemon and juicy tomatoes. It’s simply a sunny style of roasting a chicken with aromatic oregano. Serve this roast chicken dish with roasted baby potatoes-Cypriot potatoes if you can get hold of them-a village salad*, and crusty bread.

*A Cypriot village salad is similar to a Greek salad, and is comprised of lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber and sliced onions, in an oil and red wine vinegar dressing with oregano and slices of Feta (Beyaz Peynir) cheese.

Ingredients

  • 1 whole chicken, about 1.8 to 2 kilos
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and diced
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons fresh oregano, or 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • Juice and zest of 1 lemon
  • 4 large beefsteak tomatoes, quartered

Method

  1. Pre-heat oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas mark 6.
  2. Place the chicken into a large roasting tin and drizzle the olive oil over the it. Scatter the diced garlic over the chicken. Season well with salt and pepper. Sprinkle the oregano and lemon zest over the chicken.
  3. Place the sliced tomatoes in and around the chicken and place in the pre-heated oven. Cook for 2 hours until the skin is dark golden and crisp, and the chicken is cooked.
  4. Serve the chicken cut into large chunks with tomatoes, and roasted or steamed new potatoes, salad and crusty bread.