Roast Spiced Chicken with Spinach and Chickpea Raita

, from Issue #25. September, 2015
Photography by Vanessa Wu.
Roast Spiced Chicken with Spinach and Chickpea Raita

Serves: 4-6


1 chicken
olive oil
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1⁄4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper or chilli powder
sea salt

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 red onion, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 x 400 gram tin cooked chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 bag spinach, well washed, tough stalks removed and roughly sliced
2 medium carrots, peeled and grated
3⁄4 cup plain yoghurt
1⁄4 cup chopped coriander or mint
juice of 1⁄2 a lemon
sea salt and freshly ground pepper


Preheat the oven to 200°C.

Chicken: Combine the coriander and cayenne pepper.

Using kitchen scissors, cut down both sides of the backbone and discard. Snip the wishbone and push the chicken against the bench to flatten. Brush both sides with olive oil and sprinkle with the spice mixture. Season generously with salt.

Place the chicken on a lined baking tray, skin side up and roast for 55-60 minutes, basting occasionally.

To test if the chicken is cooked, pierce the thickest part with a skewer and the juices should run clear. The skin should be crisp and golden. Cover lightly and rest for 10 minutes.

Raita: Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan and cook the onion, garlic, cumin and chickpeas, until the onion is soft.

Add the spinach and turn to wilt. Stir in the carrots and cook for 1 minute. Season. Cool for 10 minutes. Fold through the yoghurt, coriander and lemon juice.

To serve: Cut the chicken into serving pieces and arrange on a platter. Garnish with lemon wedges and herbs. Serve with the chickpea raita, warm naan breads and Fragrant Basmati Rice.