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Thursday, March 13, 2014

A perfect roasted chicken dinner.....

I always try to strive to cook chicken so that it comes out moist and tender, you know, like the rotisserie chickens you get at the store?  Well, after doing a little research and a little trial and error, I found a really easy technique to share with you.  The only ingredients you need are:

a roasting chicken (2-3 lbs)
cooking twine
a roasting pan with a rack

At first I thought I would miss the garlic, rosemary, and thyme flavors that I usually add, but having it this way was just as delicious.  Make sure to pre-heat your oven to 450 degrees.

There are a few things to do to get the chicken ready to go in the oven.  The first is to completely dry it, inside and out.  The idea is that if there is any extra moisture, it will create steam when cooking and the skin will not crisp up.  The meat will also come out drier. (extra moisture = dry meat?  yes!)

Once the bird is dry, season the cavity with a generous amount of kosher salt and pepper.  Now do the same to the outside, enough so that you can see the crystals of salt .  The last step is to "truss" the chicken.  I have to admit, I usually "tie the chicken up" so I had to look up how to truss!  It sounds so much more professional!  Check out this link for easy-to-follow instructions:

 Having the chicken sit on a rack during cooking is important because it allows the heat to completely circulate around the bird.  Pop into the oven for approximately 50 minutes.  That's all, 50-60 minutes!  Insert a meat thermometer down between the leg and the breast to make sure the temp is at 165. 

As for my sides?  I decided to stuff some artichokes (I have attached a link for my recipe)  Each time I make the stuffing, it comes out a little bit different...this time I added some creamed spinach I had in the fridge.  The added flavors were delicious!


I also felt like some crunchy, salty potato cookies, so I baked 5 or 6 potatoes in the other oven while the chicken was roasting away.  To see the recipe, click on "potato cookies."

And last but not least, what dinner wouldn't be complete without some roasted broccoli?    Clean, cut and drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle generously with salt and pepper.  You need a hot oven for this, about 400 degrees, but watch out you don't let the broccoli get too brown... Should take about 10 minutes, stirring every so often. When done, I add some grated lemon zest and Parmesan cheese.

So there you have it.  This was truly my "comfort" dinner, with all of my favorites.  It was a lot of food, but I had to have a little of everything!

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