Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Oven Roasted Chicken

Our weather has been rather unusual this year.  I live in an area that doesn't get snow.  Actually, we barely get any precipitation at all.  So little, in fact, that even when it just sprinkles people don't know how to drive and I both fear for my life and get a kick out of watching them try to drive all at the same time.  Anyway, all this to say that we got snow this year!  And I'm not just talking about a few flakes falling from the sky.  No, these were big flakes and there were enough of them to stick for several hours.  Our strange weather continued when we experienced only cool/cold weather well into June instead of our usual 90-100 degree heat (I wasn't complaining about that at all!).  So, I decided that since it was still quite cool (low 70's), it would be safe to use my oven and roast a chicken.  Of course, the day I decided to do this, summer decided to show up.  Regardless of the heat, however, the chicken turned out moist and delicious (and produced some delicious leftovers, which I'll write about at another time)!

Oven Roasted Chicken
1 whole 5 lb chicken
5 cups water
1/3 cup kosher salt (or scant 1/3 cup table salt)
3 Tbsp sugar (I actually forgot the sugar and it still turned out well)
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried rosemary
1 tsp rubbed sage
1 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp garlic powder
2-3 Tbsp canola oil
Aromatic fillers (carrots pieces, quartered onions, crushed garlic cloves, lemons halves, etc.)

Remove giblets from chicken.  Brine chicken by filling a gallon zip top bag with 5 cups water, 1/3 cup kosher salt, and 3 Tbsp sugar.  Add whole chicken; seal.  Refrigerate for 4-12 hours.

I placed mine in a dish to provide support for the bag and to help prevent the bag from leaking all over my fridge!
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a small bowl, combine thyme, rosemary, sage, pepper, and garlic powder.  Add canola oil; mix well.

Remove chicken from brine and rinse well.  If you don't rinse it, you may end up with a super salty chicken.  Place chicken in a roasting or baking pan.  Stuff chicken with ingredients of your choice.  I used an onion, 4 garlic cloves, and carrots.  Rub the canola oil mixture all over the chicken.

These will help flavor the chicken from the inside.  We didn't eat these; just threw them out, since I didn't check their temperature once the chicken was done.

The chicken is stuffed.
Mine looks a little different, because I added some butter under the skin.  You can do this too, but be aware that your drippings will be super buttery!  I think I'll leave the butter out next time.

In order to prevent the legs from burning, make sure they are tight against the body of the chicken.  If not, simply cut a slit in the skin and stick the legs through.

The legs after they've been put through the slits I cut in the skin.
Place chicken in a 400 degree oven for 1 hour or until skin is browned and crispy.  Turn heat down to 350 degrees and roast for an additional 30 minutes or until the meat reaches 180 degrees on a thermometer.  Remove from oven and let the chicken rest (resting is important!!!!) for 15 minutes before cutting into it.


StaceyN said...

Mmm, looks yummy. I've never tried brining a chicken before, but I will try it soon (we have 32 chickens in the freezer that my hubby and my big boys butchered a few weeks ago, and I need to do SOMETHING with them before harvest time comes and I need the freezer space for all of our garden veggies).

Does brining make the chicken salty throughout? It's always a bummer to have a salty, nicely seasoned chicken skin and bland meat just underneath. I have never thought of soaking it in salt water. What a great idea.

It has been pretty hot where I live lately, but I roast meats all summer outside in my roaster. I can even bake bread in it. Unfortunately it needs a major cleaning after an unfortunate event involving me forgetting to turn it off all night long (it was in our enclosed front porch, and I nearly burned down the house... yikes!). So I definitely have some scrubbing to do before any chickens can safely roast in it, but you (and all those headless, featherless birds in my freezer) have motivated me to put on the ol' gloves and break out the oven cleaner!! Enjoy the summer and stay cool (I mean that literally, not in the hip way).

Anonymous said...

Nugget has their free range chickens on sale this week, 99 cents/pound and they are very good!

I typically do them in the crockpot to make chicken stock and soup when it gets hot like this. I'll be picking up a bird this week but you're right it's too hot to do the oven

Kimiko said...

Stacey, I wouldn't say the chicken was salty throughout, but it did seem to enhance the flavors throughout. It was similar to the rotisserie chickens you would find in the grocery stores (but much better!).

I kind of wish I had 32 chickens in my freezer! :)

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