In honor of President’s Day, I’m backblogging meals from previous holidays. Well, mostly just Columbus Day as that’s the only meal for which I have pictures. Last summer I got on a roasted chicken kick. Which, in all honesty, is really poor timing. No one wants their oven on for several hours at 350 degrees in a tiny Brooklyn apartment with no fan and minimal AC capabilities. Sorry, roomies. At least the results were tasty. The bird above was the third chicken, I believe, and by far the most delish. I started out under-seasoning (it really is my downfall, and probably the biggest obstacle to Lorimer Kitchen’s future success), but by round three, I was nailing the bird. I had some left over, almost out of season tomatoes, so that’s the lovely garnish you see around the edges. Nothing beats a slow roasted tomato, especially when it’s roasting/basting in chicken juices. Yeah, I’m going to need another word for chicken juices. Like most of my cooking, there’s no true recipe for the masterpiece above, just a combination of technique, temperature, and a heavy hand with the butter knife and salt shaker.
Technique: Remove giblets. Pat dry. Seriously. Take a paper towel, and run that sucker over until you’d feel comfortable leaving electronics on it. Counter-intuitively, dry raw bird = moist cooked bird.
Temperature: 350. 25-30 minutes/pound. Varies according to what you’ve stuffed in the cavity. Options range from nothing to onions to stuffing to whatever you think would taste better bathed in chicken juice. Prick when done and see if juices run clear.
Heavy Hand: After drying, slice off some pats of butter and just kind of stick it around the chicken. Shower with salt, pepper, and assorted other seasonings. Stick in oven. About thirty minutes before done time, I usually give the chick a squirt of lemon juice. Adds some flavor, and helps the skin crisp up a bit. Not necessary, but a nice little touch.