Engagement Roast Chicken With Carrot Panzanella

March 5, 2019

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes: No matter the occasion or the experience level of the cook, roast chicken is always impressive—and it is, for me, always home food. I'd never order roast chicken at a restaurant, no matter how perfect I know it'll be, because I associate it so much with the gentle hummings of the kitchen and the inimitable comforts of domesticity. Which means: at my own table, with my own things. My own chicken.Eric Kim

Food52 Review: Featured in: Engagement Roast Chicken for When You're Getting Married (to Yourself).The Editors

Serves: 1 (for dinner, plus a couple lunches)
Prep time: 20 min
Cook time: 1 hrs


  • 1/2 pound carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 red onion, thickly sliced
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil, plus 1 tablespoon for the chicken
  • Flaky sea salt, to taste, plus 2 teaspoons for the chicken
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 (3 to 3 1/2–pound) chicken
  • 1 lemon, halved, divided
  • 1/2 clove garlic, grated
  • 1/2 teaspoon anchovy paste, or 1 to 2 anchovy fillets, smashed to smithereens with a fork
  • 2 teaspoons malt vinegar (or any of your choice)
  • 1 pinch red pepper flakes, to taste
  • 1 pinch sugar, to taste
  • 4 ounces sourdough bread, crusts removed and torn into small bite-size pieces by hand
  • 1 bunch fresh Italian parsley, roughly chopped
In This Recipe


  1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
  2. In a quarter sheet pan, toss the carrots, red onion, 2 teaspoons olive oil, and a little salt and pepper together (don't go too heavy on the S&P, as this is getting dressed in a vinaigrette later).
  3. Perch the chicken on top of the vegetables, rubbing it with the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil, and seasoning all sides (top, bottom, and inside cavity) with the 2 teaspoons salt and a very generous grinding of black pepper. Stuff the cavity with one of the lemon halves.
  4. Roast the chicken for 45 to 55 minutes, or until the thigh meat reaches 165°F. (Another trick is to just multiply the weight of your chicken by 15; in other words, go for about 15 minutes per pound.)
  5. Meanwhile, in a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the garlic, anchovy paste, vinegar, red pepper flakes, and the zest and juice of the other lemon half, and season to taste with salt, pepper, and sugar.
  6. Once the chicken is done roasting, remove pan from oven and carefully (with two forks) set the bird onto a wooden cutting board to rest for 10 minutes at least. Throw the roasted carrots and onions, along with all of the pan juices, into the bowl with the anchovy vinaigrette.
  7. Place the bread pieces onto the same sheet pan and bake in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes, or until crispy. Throw into the salad bowl, along with the chopped parsley, and toss.
  8. Meanwhile, the chicken should have rested just the right amount of time. Carve it and plate a portion for yourself alongside some of the bread salad. Turn the chicken over and eat the two oysters before heading over to the television with your roast chicken dinner.
  9. Store the rest of the chicken and panzanella in the fridge to eat throughout the week. (Don’t forget to save the carcass for stock later.)

More Great Recipes:
Italian|American|Chicken|Carrot|Sheet Pan|Weeknight Cooking|Weekend Cooking|On the Cheap|Entree|Lunch|Leftovers|Dinner

Reviews (4) Questions (0)

4 Reviews

Dana M. March 13, 2019
This was ah. maz. ing. I’m pretty sure roasting a chicken is my absolute favorite thing to do in the kitchen, but add this amazing salad along with it, and you’ve got something pretty perfect. I made the recipe exactly as followed, except I forgot to buy the anchovy paste so I just used a teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce. After dinner there was a bit of the panzanella left and I wondered how it would keep in the fridge. Would it just turn soggy? Turned out not to a problem since while I cleaned the kitchen, I kept returning to the bowl to pick out bits of bread until it was gone. Problem solved! Thank you for an absolutely wonderful recipe!
Author Comment
Eric K. March 14, 2019
Dana, this makes me so happy. I post a lot of recipes, but I felt strongly about this one, as it took many takes to get just right (that's a lot of roast chickens for one!).

And agreed, the panzanella really is the star.
Dogolaca March 11, 2019
This was a winner. In my "cooking for one" world a whole chicken is too much, so I adapted this to a half spatchcocked chicken, roasted at a higher temperature, with lemon slices under it. The bold dressing on the bread salad worked great. Next time I'll use more carrots.
Author Comment
Eric K. March 11, 2019