Ina Garten’s Engagement Chicken

1 roasting chicken, 4-5 pounds
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 medium lemons
1 whole head of garlic, slice in half horizontally
Good quality olive oil
2 Spanish or yellow onions, peeled and thickly sliced
1/2 cup dry white wine (such as pinot grigio or sauvignon blanc)
1/2 cup chicken stock, homemade if possible
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

Step 1: Prepare the chicken
Preheat the oven to 425°F. Remove and discard the giblets from the chicken, then use paper towel to pat it dry all over. Sprinkle a generous amount of salt and pepper inside the chicken cavity.

Step 2: Stuff and season the chicken
Slice both lemons into quarters. Place two of the quarters inside the chicken, along with both halves of the head of garlic. Brush the whole outside of the chicken with olive oil, then liberally sprinkle more salt and pepper over the surface. Use kitchen twine to tie the legs together and tuck the wings behind the body. Place the chicken in a 14×11-inch roasting pan.

Step 3: Prepare the onions and lemons
Place the remaining lemon quarters and the sliced onions in a large bowl. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 1 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper; toss everything together until thoroughly coated. Pour the lemons and onions into the pan all around the chicken.

Step 4: Roast
Place the chicken in the oven and roast it for about 1 hour and 15 minutes. (Or roughly 20 minutes per pound.) The chicken is done when the juices run clear when you slice between the leg and thigh. (Or when the internal temperature is 165°.) Remove the pan from the oven; transfer the chicken to a platter and cover it with foil.

Step 5: Make the gravy
Place the roasting pan with the lemons and onions on a burner set to medium-high heat. Add in the white wine and use a wooden spoon to stir, scraping browned bits from the bottom. Add the chicken stock and the flour; stir constantly for about a minute until the gravy thickens. If any juices have gathered under the chicken, pour these into the gravy. Taste the gravy for seasoning, adding a little more salt or pepper if needed.

Step 6: Serve
Carve the chicken, then spoon the onions and gravy over the pieces. Serve immediately, hot or warm, with an extra sprinkle of salt. Encourage your guests to take the roasted lemons, too. They’ll be very tender and ready to eat, rind and all, with just a hint of bitterness that works well with the rich gravy.