Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Roasted Rosemary-Garlic Chicken
Everyone loves chicken, right? So when was the last time you cooked a WHOLE chicken? Sure, it takes longer, and it's easier to just pick up a bag of chicken boob and be on your way. But cooking a WHOLE chicken has more flavor, and more variety, plus you can use the chicken bones to make chicken stock, and then later a taste bud-tantalizing chicken soup. SO, this is part one of three of the uses of a whole chicken:
1 Whole chicken, about 4-5 lbs (I buy the organic, free range bird from Trader Joes)
5 cloves garlic, smashed and minced
2 Tablespoons chopped, fresh rosemary
2 teaspoons coarse sea salt
2-3 Tablespoons olive oil
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
If there's a baggie of chicken parts like the neck and heart etc inside the chicken cavity, please remember to remove this...also feel free to cut off any excess fat at the main opening, just to keep it clean. Pat the outside of the chicken dry with a paper towel.
In a small mixing bowl, stir together the garlic, rosemary, oil and sea salt. Use enough oil to make it easy to spread, but not too liquidy. Place the chicken in a medium-sized baking pan (I used a 12x8 pan), with the back side up. Spoon about half of the oil and herb mixture over the top of the chicken and rub in with your hands. Make sure to get around the wings and all over the backside of the bird. Turn the chicken over and repeat with the rest of the oil and herb mixture, rubbing into the chicken once more, making sure to rub a teaspoon or two INSIDE the bird cavity...this really helps with the overall flavor.
Once you've used all the oil mixture, pop this baby into the oven (middle rack) for one hour. After the first hour, turn the temperature up to 375 degrees and continue to cook another 30 minutes or so, depending on the size of your bird. I used a 5 pounder and it took about 90 minutes. The skin will be a nice golden brown and the garlic will be cooked to perfection. Let sit at room temperature for a few minutes before carving into. Serves 6-8 depending in their appetite.
* I had this roast chicken on top of a nice, large green salad with lots of spinach and veggies. Just place the warm chicken on top of the salad greens along with some of the juices (OK it's really just fat but it tastes SO GOOD) that ran off into the pan, and no need for salad dressing!!