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Bagel seasoning perks up roast chicken, potatoes

Everything bagel seasoning is the unusual ingredient that seasoned a salad touted recently in this blog.

This is one of Trader Joe’s signature seasonings that has become widely available at other grocers, including Food 4 Less in Medford, which makes and packages its own. Even better, this recipe from the Chicago Tribune includes instructions for making the blend at home from individual spices, likely at a much lower cost, particularly if you purchase from bulk bins.

Once you have your seasoning, you can sprinkle it over just about anything, or bake it into breads and pastries. I love the seasoning’s use with puff pastry in this recipe from my blog archives.

It even makes a crunchy crust on roast meats, according to writer JeanMarie Brownson, who scores bonus points with me for her suggestion to sear chicken liver in a small skillet with a little oil and butter and serve on a piece of toast for a cook’s treat. When I have a good-quality, organic bird with giblets, I similarly indulge.

If your chicken or turkey comes with the neck and gizzards, set them in a deep saucepan of water and simmer an hour or so to make a light broth for another use. Even if you have no desire to use giblets, check the bird’s cavities to be sure they are empty before cooking.

Everything Bagel Roast Chicken With New Potatoes

1 whole chicken, about 5 pounds

3 tablespoons everything bagel seasoning mix (see note)

1 tablespoon smoked paprika

2 teaspoons dried basil

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 1/4 to 1 1/2 pounds petite red or small gold potatoes (about 1 1/2 inches in diameter)

1 handful fresh cilantro, roughly chopped, or minced chives or a combination

Heat oven to 375 F on convection or 400 degrees conventional. Put the seasoning mix, paprika, basil and oregano into a small bowl.

Pat the chicken dry. Tuck wings behind back. Place back side up in a large roasting pan. Sprinkle chicken generously with one-third of seasoning mixture. Turn chicken breast side up and sprinkle with another one-third of seasoning. Drizzle chicken with the olive oil.

Roast chicken for 25 minutes. Add the potatoes to pan and roll them around in pan juices. Sprinkle potatoes with remaining seasoning mixture. Continue roasting, stirring potatoes every 20 minutes or so, until potatoes are tender, chicken is golden and juices run clear when thigh is pierced, for about 50 minutes more.

Gently transfer potatoes to a bowl. Put chicken on a cutting board and tent with foil. Let rest for about 10 minutes. Scrape pan juices into a bowl (or save them for serving over buttered noodles or rice).

Carve chicken into serving portions. Serve with a drizzle of pan juices and some potatoes. Sprinkle with the chopped herbs.

Makes 6 servings.

Homemade everything bagel seasoning mix: In a jar with a tight-fitting lid, put 1/4 cup sesame seeds, 1 tablespoon coarse (kosher) salt, 1 tablespoon minced dried garlic, 1 tablespoon minced dried onion, 1 tablespoon black sesame seeds (or more regular sesame seeds) and 2 teaspoons poppy seeds. Shake well. Keeps almost forever.

Tribune News Service photo