Moroccan-Spiced Roast Chicken Recipe

 IMG_1143My mother-in-law gives Jamie & I a new cookbook (or three) every year during beach week as our anniversary gift.  I hate purchasing cookbooks when I know I can usually get the recipe for free online, but their is something so nice about having a book with pictures to follow out in front of you as you cook.  She purchased Weeknight Fresh & Fast (Williams-Sonoma): Simple, Healthy Meals for Every Night of the Week for us this year.  LOVE IT!  It has a meal for every week of the year and divides the recipes into Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter.

I tried a fall dish last night because I am over these 100 degree days.  The Moroccan Baked Chicken has a little kick to it but O gobbled it all up!

IMG_1145Moroccan-Spiced Roast Chicken Recipe

Serves 4


  • One whole (4 to 5 pounds) chicken
  • Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 1/2 teaspoons sweet paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/4 to 3/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 smallish lemon
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for the baking sheet
  • 2 small (about 3/4 pounds total) orange-fleshed sweet potatoes, unpeeled
  • 1 pound cauliflower, cut into 1-inch florets
  • 1 red onion, cut into 8 wedges


1. Preparation: Preheat the oven to 450°F.  Oil a heavy large rimmed baking sheet.

2. In a small bowl, mix the paprika, cumin, pepper flakes, and cinnamon. Set aside 2 1/2 teaspoons of the spice mixture for the vegetables. The rest is for the chicken. Finely grate the zest from the lemon, cut the lemon into quarters, and mix the zest into the spices for the chicken. Gradually mix in 2 tablespoons of the olive oil to make a paste.

3. Pull out and discard the fat and giblets from the cavity of the chicken. Pat the chicken very dry with paper towels. Starting at the edge of the main cavity, slide a finger under the skin over each breast half, making a pocket between the skin and meat. Rub a total of 1 tablespoon of salt over the chicken skin and toss a little salt inside the cavity. Sprinkle the chicken generously with black pepper.

3. Spread a little of the seasoning paste inside the cavity, slather some of it under the skin over the chicken breasts, and rub the rest of the paste all over the outside of the chicken. Toss the lemon quarters inside the cavity. Place the bird in the center of the baking sheet and roast for 30 minutes.

4. Meanwhile, cut the sweet potatoes in half crosswise, and then quarter each half lengthwise to create wedges. Combine the sweet potatoes, cauliflower, and onion in a bowl. Add the remaining 3 tablespoons oil and toss to coat. Add the reserved spice mixture, sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper, and toss to coat.

5. After the chicken has roasted for 30 minutes, remove it from the oven. Tilt the sheet pan and spoon off most of the fat. Return the chicken to the center of the sheet and spoon the vegetables around it. Return the pan to the oven and continue roasting until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of a thigh registers 165°F (74°C), about 40 minutes longer, depending on the size of the bird. If the skin is getting too dark before the meat is done, reduce the oven temperature to 425°F.

6. Transfer the chicken to a platter and let rest for 10 minutes. Carve the chicken and serve with the vegetables.





Fresh Produce

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We have had such a great bounty of fresh produce from our garden lately.  The garden is slowly dying off but still producing!  I really didn’t think we would get so much out of it for our first year, but boy I was wrong. I am so proud of Jamie and all of his hard work. IMG_9721




Well, I was a good wife and picked up a Charcoal Grill/Smoker that was 100% free on the side of the road.  Jamie decided to take on the “Mount Everest” of smoking meats and wanted to do a Brisket as his first smoking meat.    IMG_0358IMG_0356IMG_0357After smoking it for over 10 hours, it was the best Brisket I have ever tasted!  He did it a Texas style and I made the butter beans and corn from our garden and twice baked potatoes.


Fresh Produce

IMG_8941 iphone3-001We have finally started to pick fresh produce out of our garden everyday.  It doesn’t get any better than this!  I ordered my canning gear a month ago so hopefully it will arrive this coming week.  I have too many green beans frozen in my freezer already.


Eat More Beef

IMG_8865I went to the McDonalds drive thru tonight and guess who was their to greet me?   …. Wild chickens! I felt so guilty that I didn’t order my usual chicken nuggets.  Are the chickens starting a campaign to eat more beef?  Chik Fil A cows better step up their game!


Surf & Turf


My Grandma spoiled us today!  She went all out and made us a perfect surf and turf.  On the menu was King Crab, steak and twice baked potatoes!  IMG_8523It was the first time Olivia tried shell fish.  They say to introduce common food allergy foods within the 6-12 month range so they have a less likely chance of having certain allergies.  She didn’t break out in hives so we are all good! IMG_8525 IMG_8528 IMG_8529 IMG_8530She LOVED it!  How could you not?


Garden Time

Jamie has been so excited to start our own vegetable & fruit garden in our backyard.  We have over an acre and a very large backyard.


Jamie created 7 very long rows in our backyard.


We went to a local nursery and picked up some different seeds. We like it better than the packets because they will weight out the seeds and give you exactly what you want.

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We planted both already started young plants, as well as seeds.


We ended up planted over 16 different varieties of fruit and vegetables.


We fertilized around the plants without letting it touch the plant.


So excited!