Avia’s Whole chicken

 Hola and feliz ano nuevo! (“Bon any nou” in Catalan)

I hope 2015 has been good to all of you. I’ve got no complaints, it has been a very good year for me. Let’s hope 2016 is as good, or even better! I have a wedding to plan 🙂
I was able to spend time with my family and friends. Like a lot of families, Christmas is a big day for us. It’s often difficult to get everyone together, as there are 28 of us! But, everyone tried extra hard and we did it.
Also, like a lot of families, we like to eat a lot of good food. The holiday fare was amazing. My grandma (àvia in catalan) is definitely the best cook ever. At least for me 😉
On Christmas day, lunch generally consists of a soup that is out of this world. My grandma only makes it once a year, just for Christmas. I’ve never seen a pot so big! After the soup, we eat shrimp and escamarlans (A Catalan name for langoustines- The common name for a number of edible European crustaceans.) She made 170 shrimp and 120 escamarlans! And after that, we had cabrito (baby goat, very delicious).
When we are done with that, we are definitely stuffed. But of course, there is dessert. The classic Spanish dessert for Christmas is coca and turrones. Coca is a kind of sweet bread. Turrones are a type of nougat made by cooking honey, sugar, eggs, and toasted almonds, or chocolate, coconut, nuts, etc, and are the most traditional Catalan dessert.
All in all, Christmas was spectacular, as was the food! I hope your’s was too.
The day after Christmas was just me and my grandma. We got into the kitchen for a few hours and prepared a Catalan-style roasted chicken. It was fun! And that’s the recipe for today.
Ingredients for 1 whole chicken:
  • 1 whole chicken (preferably one that is local and organic, like the one we used)
  • 1 apple
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts
  • 10-15 pitted plums (We used dried plums)
  • 1/4 cup cognac
  • 1/4 cup whiskey
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 onion
  • 1 bulb garlic
  • 1 sprig of rosemary
  • 1/2 lemon
  • salt and pepper
  • Preheat the oven to 390 degrees fahrenheit.
  • Remove the giblets and neck of the chicken and set aside. Wash the chicken and let it dry.


  • Mix the cognac with the plums in a bowl.
  • Peel and cut the apple into small squares.
  • Season the inside of the chicken cavity, and the outside of the chicken, with salt and pepper. Stuffed the chicken with the apple, pine nuts and the plums (reserve the cognac, we will use it later.)
  • Seal the cavity of the chicken, I used toothpicks, but you could use string. Squeeze the 1/2 lemon on top of the chicken and drizzle on some olive oil.
  • Cook in the oven for 10 minutes and then reduce the heat to 330F.
  • Add the cognac on top and cook for another 20 minutes.
  • Add the garlic bulb, onion, and rosemary to the baking pan and also pour in the cup of chicken broth. Finally, pour the whiskey over the top of the chicken.


  • pollo5


  • Cook for about 1 hour and 30 minutes to 2 hours or until the internal temperature reaches 160-170 degrees F. Remove the toothpicks and it’s ready to serve.

I served the roasted chicken with mashed potatoes, brussel sprouts, caramelized carrots, and cranberry sauce, and topped with gravy. This is an excellent and seasonal dish, but with a Catalan twist. I hope you enjoy it!

Bon profit!

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Hola y Bienvenido/a! Hello and Welcome! My name is Ivette and I am a dual citizen! Originally, I from Catalonia, Spain but in 2014 I moved to the United States and I currently live in Maryland with my husband Richard (number 1 taster, thank you!), my baby girl Beulah my rescue dig Vicky and my two (big!) cutie cats Pintxo & Pastifa. Full house! I love Spanish food. In Spain there is always something to celebrate, gathering with friends and family… We have THREE dishes at every meal! Yes, 3! You will have a first full dish like pasta and for the second dish you will have fish/meat and then dessert, and after dessert coffee…. When I am in Spain and get together with my family (there are 31 of us!), we can start lunch at 2:30pm and finish it at 7pm… I have always loved cooking. My grandmother it is a great, great cook and I think my love of cooking is because of her. When I was in college, my favorite breaks, were getting into the kitchen and cooking or baking something. I was able to escape the normal daily routine of law school. In this blog, I would like to share some Spanish recipes as well as other delicious recipes. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me at joyofspanishcooking@gmail.com Bon profit!

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