Thursday, August 2, 2012

Roast Chicken

Maybe everyone else is already producing roast chickens with ease, without a recipe, but it took a recipe published in my newspaper to prod me into trying it for the first time.  I tweaked the recipe a bit, using what I've learned about roasting a turkey.  This is more of a technique than a recipe, but I like having it all written down.  I made it for the second time last night, and it was a hit!  The kids eat the meat much better than typical chicken breasts, because it is so much moister.  And I thoroughly enjoy the crispy, garlick-y skin!

Roast Chicken

1 whole chicken, 4 to 5 lbs.
½ cup mayonnaise
2 gallons water
2 T fresh herbs
1 cup kosher salt
½ onion, peeled
1 cup sugar
Salt and pepper
5T butter, softened
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
4-5 cloves garlic, divided

Brining the chicken (6 hours to overnight):  Put 2 gallons water, kosher salt and sugar in a large stockpot or brining bucket.  Swish to dissolve.  Remove giblets from chicken and submerge chicken in the brine.  (1 gallon water, ½ cup salt, ½ cup sugar seems to be enough for my stockpot, but it's easy to adjust).

Two and a quarter hours before dinner:  Remove chicken from the brine and rinse thoroughly.  Pat dry with paper towels.  Place chicken in roasting pan or dish.  Preheat oven to 350°.  Mix one pressed clove of garlic in with the softened butter.  (I freeze leftover garlic butter from when I make garlic bread-- this is a good way to use this-- just take the butter out of the freezer when you start brining the chicken.)  Chop fresh herbs and mix into the mayo.  Gently loosen the skin over the breast and rub the herbed mayonnaise over the meat underneath the skin.  To reach further back, place a large dollop of the mayonnaise under the skin, then, massage it back by pressing on the skin.  Then, rub the skin with the garlic butter and salt and pepper generously.  Place the half onion and the rest of the garlic cloves, peeled, in the cavity of the chicken.  Pour the chicken broth into the bottom of the pan.  Place roasting pan in oven and set timer for 1 hour and 10 minutes.  Then peel potatoes, etc. to get ready for the meal.  When the timer goes off, increase the heat to 400° and roast for another 20-25 minutes, until skin is crispy and a meat thermometer registers 165°.  Remove chicken from the oven and lift out chicken onto a cutting board.  Tent with foil and let rest for 15 minutes.  Meanwhile, strain pan juices through a sieve into a saucepan to make gravy.  Heat the juices, whisking in Wondra flour, until thickened.  Taste, then salt if needed.  Carve chicken and serve.

1 comment:

  1. Brining? Mayonaissing the skin? Fancy! I am sure it was yummily moist!