After doing a lot of reading on the topic and hearing some opinions, I decided to try organic free-range chicken. After all, any antibiotics, growth hormones, or animal byproducts that chicken consumes are also being consumed by you. It is pricey, yes, but Trader Joe’s had a deal for 2 breasts and 4 legs at $2.99/pound so I figured I’d give it a shot.
I wanted to let the flavors of the meat come through with a simple preparation. I decided on lemon and garlic mixed with olive oil and stuffed it under the skin of the chicken while it cooked to lock in moisture and add a good amount of flavor. The result was delicious, and I will definitely be buying organic chicken in the future as I felt the meat itself had a much better texture and flavor than the “regular” stuff, though the free-range part my have to take a backseat until my wallet gets fatter (sorry chickens!). I paired the chicken with Martha Stewart’s Sauteed Spring Vegetables, an eternal favorite especially when made with veggies straight from the famers market (recipe here). I also added a sweet potato baked at 350° for 45 minutes.
This recipe is:
• Refined sugar-free
Lemon Garlic Chicken
• 2 lbs organic free-range chicken, skin on
• 6 cloves garlic, minced
• 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
• 1 lemon, thinly sliced, about 1/8″
• juice of 2 small lemons
• salt and pepper, to taste
1. Preheat oven to 350°F with the rack in the center. Combine all ingredients (except chicken) in a bowl, mixing until well-combined.
2. Place chicken in a 13×9 roasting pan or other large baking dish. Gently find the open end of the chicken skin. Using a small spatula (or your fingers… no metal here) gently rub garlic mixture under the skin and onto the meat. Repeat on all pieces, evenly distributing all of the garlic mix amongst the chicken until there is none left.
3. Place the lemon slices under the chicken skin, taking care to keep the skin in tact.
4. Place the chicken in the oven and cook for 15-25 minutes, until juices run clear when sliced. The cook time will depend on the size of the pieces, so you may need to remove the smaller ones (legs) first and leave the larger ones (breasts) to cook a bit longer.
5. Remove the skin and serve with lemon slices on top.
Have you tried organic and/or free-range chicken before? What were your thoughts? Let me know in the comments below!