Ralph and I spent Sunday putting the vegetable and flower gardens, at the farm, to bed for the winter. It’s comforting to me, knowing that we have done everything necessary to allow the plants and soil to rest and be nourished throughout the long winter ahead. I think it’s that part of me that needs to constantly nurture someone or something. My uncle George had organized a load of composted cow manure to be delivered for the vegetable garden. Ralph spread the manure – could I ever have fun with this – while I weeded, tagged and cut back the perennial beds.
All of my herbs, excluding the basil, were still thriving because of the placement of the herb garden. I chose the south side of the shed to ensure as much warmth and protection as possible.
I love dried poppy-seed heads. In fact, I prefer them to the flower…
I have tons of poppy seeds for winter baking…
I harvested mint, sage, orange thyme, lemon thyme, french thyme, sage, variegated sage, Italian parsley, variegated oregano and fennel fronds. I made herb bouquets and gave them to my chef friends.
Sunday was the perfect day to roast a chicken. Sunshiney, a little nip in the air and we were starving from all the yard work we had done. Given that I had a bumper crop of fresh sage, I decided to prepare a potato stuffing with said herb, onion, garlic, bacon and baguette crumbs. Then I wrapped the chicken in huge sage leaves and peppered bacon strips – the aroma while the chicken roasted was ‘off the charts’!
Roasted Chicken Wrapped in Bacon and Sage with Potato and Bacon Stuffing
Preheat oven 350*F
3 lb chicken, rinsed and dried well
4 strips peppered bacon, cut in half
6 large fresh sage leaves
Potato Bacon Stuffing
1 large russet potato, peeled, boil and mashed
1 cup dried baguette, crusts removed and torn into small pieces
1 strip peppered bacon
2 tablespoon butter
1/2 medium onion, chopped
1 clove of garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
small handful fresh sage leaves, chopped
In a small skillet, fry bacon until crispy.
Remove bacon and chop.
Add butter to bacon drippings, when frothy add onion and garlic
Sautee until translucent – remove from heat.
In a medium bowl, combine potato, bread crumbs, sage, bacon bits, salt, and all contents of skillet.
Combine gently then fill chicken cavity. Place chicken in a small roaster.
Firmly press the sage leaves on the breast and legs.
Place bacon strips between sage leaves and press firmly.
Leaving the sage exposed on the legs will ensure that it is lovely and crispy!
Cover with lid then place in oven for 2 hours – basting not necessary!
Allow chicken to rest for 10 minutes on counter before carving.
Serve with a simple gravy and your favorite vegetables.
I am off to Calgary for a couple of days to visit Meggie – see you soon!
Thanks for reading.