To me, roasted chicken is a very “wifey” thing to make. You know, a healthy home-cooked meal; the kind of dinner your husband comes home to after a long day at work. And since I’ve got a ring on my finger, I figured it was time I tried this (allegedly) simple dish.
Since I’d never cooked a whole chicken before, so I had no idea how gross it was! I’d only seen lovely pictures of a golden roasted bird, not the part where you reach into the animal carcass and pull out its organs. But that’s what you have to do. And I did it. And it was worth it.
I started by chopping my fruits and veggies. I used:
- about 10 small dutch potatoes
- a generous handful of baby carrots
- small bundle of thyme
- 1 lemon
- 1 small head of garlic (that’s right: head, not clove)
- a few sprigs of rosemary
- 1/2 yellow onion
- Chicken (mine was about 5 lbs)
- wine (for drinking; not required, but highly recommended)
Then I preheated the oven to 425°F and prepped the chicken. This included tearing out the above mentioned “giblets”, “trimming the neck” (which was really gruesome), and removing any tiny feathers, then rinsing it and patting it dry (inside and out) with paper towels.
Then I generously salted and peppered the inside and outside of the chicken before stuffing the lemon (quartered), garlic (halfed, width-wise), and thyme into the cavity. Next, I transferred the stuffed bird to a cast iron skillet. I don’t have a roasting pan, but if I did, I probably would have used it. I nestled the onion, carrots, and potatoes around the bird and tucked in half sprigs of rosemary. (Note: I also tied the little legs together with jewelry wire. You should use twine, if you have it.)
Last, I melted about 2 tbsp. of melted butter and painted it onto the chicken for a nice crispy skin. I poured the leftover butter over the surrounding veggies, and sprinkled them with salt and pepper before popping it into the oven.
I set my timer for an hour and a half and waited patiently while a the scent of baking herbs filled my condo. If you are roasting a smaller bird, it may only need to cook for an hour. It’s done when you cut between the leg and thigh and the juice runs clear. Remove it from the oven, cover with foil, and let it sit for about 20 minutes. Then serve!
It came out amazing. Sure, I almost joined PETA once or twice throughout the process, but it really was worth it. And not nearly as hard as I imagined (once you get past the butchering parts). What really surprised me was how delicious the vegetables were. Jason couldn’t get enough of those carrots- next time, I’ll definitely add more of them!