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John and Lisa's Weekend Kitchen

Herby roast chicken with orzo and butterbeans

John and Lisa are preparing some family feasts in their Weekend Kitchen - big dishes to enjoy together!

They start with a roast chicken stuffed with orzo and served on a bed of new potatoes and butterbeans.

Next it’s warming sausage meatballs and dumplings in a cider sauce. John has Lisa’s favourite prawn fideuà made with a cheat’s lobster sauce.

And for dessert it’s a decadent hazelnut brownie with chocolate sauce & toffee popcorn.

Herby roast chicken with orzo and butterbeans

Serves 6


100g orzo

1 chicken stock cube 

Large bunch parsley, chopped

Zest and juice of 1 lemon

1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed

6 spring onions, chopped

1 whole chicken approx. 1.5 kg

1 large onion sliced into 3 flat pieces

Olive oil

Salt and pepper

Approx 300g or a handful of baby new potatoes 

2 x 400g tin butter beans, drained

200ml white wine

(You will also need a large roasting tin and a few cocktail sticks)


Chicken and orzo stuffing method

1. Take the chicken out of the fridge half an hour before cooking; this raises the core temperature so it cooks evenly. Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan.

2. Put the orzo into a bowl, crumble in the stock cube, pour in 200ml boiling water then leave to sit for a good 10 minutes. Add half of the parsley, the lemon zest, garlic and spring onions into the bowl and stir together. Spoon the orzo into the chicken carcass then pull the skin together to seal and secure the orzo stuffing with a couple of cocktail sticks by threading it through the skin and finally into the breast meat.

3. Lay the onion slices in the bottom of the roasting tin, sit the chicken on top and rub the skin with olive oil. Season with plenty of salt and pepper. Place the potatoes around the bird and roast for about 1 hour 45 minutes.

Butterbean and serving method

1. Take the chicken out to rest, and when it is a little cooler take out the toothpick and tip the orzo back into the roasting tin. It might be quite solid and will need breaking up a bit with a wooden spoon.

2. Set your chicken aside and then add your butter beans and the wine to the roasting tin and bring to a simmer on the top of the stove until the wine has reduced, and then add the remaining parsley. Add a good squeeze of lemon then serve with the roast chicken.

Logo of John and Lisa's Weekend Kitchen
itv |

John and Lisa's Weekend Kitchen