The Lemon Myrtle leaves arrived from Australia. They smelt like a cross between lemon and marjoram. For once, the whole family was unanimous in its praise of the roast. They liked it! And I have a wonderful new recipe to gleefully gloat over.
I took 4 leaves of lemon myrtle and crushed it into small bits. I mixed the lemon myrtle bits into 100g of butter and added 1 small teaspoon of salt. Taking a blunt butter knife, I gently detach the skin from the meat so that I have space between skin and meat to insert the herb butter. The idea is to distribute the herb butter evenly under the skin. This makes for an extraordinarily crispy skin with very juicy meat. The lemon myrtle has a rather intense flavour. It permeated the whole bird and oozed out onto the vegetables. The whole pan smelt of lemon and marjoram. It made me want to float.
I roasted the chicken on a bed of water-dense olive-oiled vegetables (zucchini and tomatoes) for 1.5 hours at 180C, turning after 45 minutes. The resulting sauce comprised of vegetable juice, olive oil and lemon myrtle butter was so good, my family asked for bread to soak it up. This is definitely a dish I can use to entertain.