Roast Chicken Legs with Tomatoes (revisited) Posted by: | May 27, 2011

I made this classic Roast Chicken dish (a fantastic Jamie Oliver recipe) about a year ago, for an Easter dinner with friends. Back then this was the first roast chicken I had ever attempted and it succeeded in creating the impression that I knew what I was doing in the kitchen (which I hardly did back then). Little did the guests know, it’s probably the easiest dish to make, next to scrambled eggs. How simple is it to just toss chicken legs with salt and tomatoes, then dump it into the oven to roast until the meat falls off? One year and many more roast chicken meals later (Roast chicken with Apples and Leeks, Roast Chicken with Potatoes, Carrots & Leeks, Roast Chicken with Chives & Mustard sauce…), I realized, this good old Jamie Oliver recipe is still the best Roast Chicken I know. So when Dad recently overstocked on chicken legs, I knew I had to make this dish again, and make it better than before.


So I did. It was almost unrecognizably good. I gave this simple, rustic dish a major “face-lift” with a few tweaks on temperature and roasting time, plus some additional seasonal vegetables. The winning ingredient was the local cherry tomatoes that were tiny but bursting with juice and ripe sweetness, lending its flavors to the tender chicken that absorbs all this goodness like a sponge. Now it totally deserves a new blog entry, also with much better photography than its predecessor (point-and-shoot camera, eww).


PS: Thanks to Phuoc’n Delicious, I finally managed to fix my portrait image centralizing issue that I had been suffering forever! Thanks so much dear *muah muah muah*



On the side, I made French bean salad (always count on it to perk up any roast dish), and fluffy mashed potatoes (so fluffy and light – the perfect companion to savory chicken and juicy tomatoes). I made this winner meal as a post-celebration of my parents 32nd Wedding anniversary, and it instantly felt as festive as Christmas. It’s always amazing how food  can instantly transform a normal, forgettable day to a nice memory that lasts a lifetime. Provided that you enjoy and share it with people you love.


Roast chicken, I love you.



Roast Chicken Legs with Tomatoes

(partially adapted from “Jamie’s Dinners” by Jamie Oliver)



(serves 4)


  • 4 large chicken legs
  • 300g cherry tomatoes
  • 2 plum tomatoes, quartered
  • 2 carrots, cut into thick strips
  • 3 medium leeks, use only the white to light green parts, divide in half and cut in 4cm lengths strips
  • 1 whole bulb of garlic, broken up into cloves
  • 1 big bunch of fresh basil
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and Pepper for seasoning




Preheat oven to 170C.


1. Season chicken pieces all over with salt and pepper and put into the pan in one layer. Tuck the tomatoes, carrots and leeks under the chicken until everything is snug and tight. Scatter the basil leaves and garlic cloves on top. Drizzle over some olive oil. Sprinkle some salt and pepper over the vegetables. That’s it!


2. Place the pan in the oven for 1 hour, flipping the chicken and big tomato chunks once after 30 minutes. Increase temperature to 230C and bake for another 20 minutes, flipping every 10 minutes, until the chicken is brown and crispy on the outside, but juicy and tender on the inside, with the meat easily falling off the bone if you push with a knife.


3. Serve with mashed potatoes and salad on the side. Squeeze out the garlic out of the skins before serving.







4 Responses to “Roast Chicken Legs with Tomatoes (revisited)”

  1. jelinejoy says:

    s a l i v a t i n g . . . .
    the day i go to hanoi (i cross my fingers that it’ll be soonish like next year!), please tell me you will cook me one of your yummy dishes!

  2. Mara says:

    I made Jamie’s version a few weeks ago when I had company and it was the best dinner-party-dish ever. So easy and so delicious! I threw in a few baby potatoes, they were very good, too. I’ll try your temperature tweaks next time :-)

  3. [...] this one is by far the best – hands down. Though he did say the same about my previous Roast Chicken with Cherry Tomatoes. But apparently, I outdid myself yet again. [...]

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