Dump chicken in slow cooker, turn on, leave for the best part of 9 hours and then eat. Simples.
If this is so simple then why am I blogging the ‘recipe’ I hear you ask? Well – after 3 months of owning a slow cooker, listening to a friend tell me this could be done, and reading about 10 recipes I still wasn’t convinced that chicken from a slow cooker could compare with an oven roasted chicken. I am here to assure you it can. I had previously imagined the chicken skin would end up wrinkly and gross – and what joy is cooking a whole roast chicken without crispy skin?
I researched many recipes before attempting this – and obsessively tried to work out exactly how long to leave the chicken in the cooker for. There is lots of conflicting advice out there people! I came across an idea to use tin foil to help raise the chicken off the bottom of the slow cooker so it doesn’t sog away in its own fat. I rather liked that idea. I also like the idea of Paleo Pot’s coriander & lime marinade so will maybe try that next time.
My slow cooker chicken was superb. Much to my surprise the skin was crispy and the meat beautifully tender with a truly pleasant aroma of lemon. Even the breast meat which can often be dry was succulent right the way through.
The only downside I can think of was that as all the meat fell off the carcass incredibly easily, there was not a trace of meat left on the carcass when I came to make up stock from the remains. The resulting stock had less of a meaty flavour, but was beautifully clear instead. Though since you get more meat to eat with your roast in return its no bad thing!
I went for the leg first – my favourite bit – then used the leftovers for a cold salad for the next day at work. I then bagged up the rest in portions and stuck them in the freezer for future meals – nothing like being organised with food to save time in future!
A perfect no-fuss, fool proof Sunday dinner cooked whilst I was out training for a 14 mile charity walk (which takes place this coming Sunday – wish me luck!)
Ingredients (serves 4-5 depending how hungry you are)
- 1.8kg free-range / organic chicken (the best you can afford)
- Celtic salt
- Handful fresh rosemary
- 1 lemon
- Tin foil
- Chop or blend the rosemary and combine with the salt, rub all over the chicken skin.
- Cut a lemon in half and stuff both parts inside the carcass.
- Screw up 3 balls of tin foil and place in the bottom of the slow cooker (mine is 6.5 ltr size), place the chicken on top.
- Cook on high for 1-1hr 30, then turn on low for 7.5-8 hours.
- When ready gently remove the chicken from the slow cooker bit by bit – it will fall apart so there’s no use in trying to carve up the traditional way. Cut into portioned pieces, reserving all the bones for stock and serve on a platter.
- Put all the bones back in the slow cooker and cover with fresh filtered water on low for another 24 hours for some home-made chicken stock.