Sunday, February 27, 2011

Perfect Roast Chicken

Let me just begin by telling you that this recipe was without a doubt a learning experience:
1. A whole chicken will not defrost quickly. If you think that it is defrosted, the inside is in fact not
2. My dutch oven finally has a use! Woohoo!
3. You do not want to know what giblets are. I was praying for strength today as I removed them from my chicken. I feel that what does not kill me only makes me stronger. Next time as I remove the giblets I will not scream like a little girl...
4. I got to use our meat thermometer for the first time.

Without further ado, let me introduce you to this super yummy recipe. I saw it on the Little Kitchen that Could and she had found it on the Food Network from Ina Garten.

Perfect Roast Chicken
1 (5 to 6 pound) roasting chicken
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 large bunch fresh thyme, plus 20 sprigs
1 lemon, halved
1 head garlic, cut in half crosswise
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter, melted
1 large yellow onion, thickly sliced
4 carrots cut into 2-inch chunks
1 bulb of fennel, tops removed, and cut into wedges
2-4 small red skinned potatoes, quartered
Olive oil
Other tools
A roasting pan or pot (I used my dutch oven)
Kitchen string (I did not have this, so I use a wooden skewer that I cut down to size)
Meat thermometer (optional, but extremely helpful)

Step by Step
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Remove the chicken giblets from inside the chicken. Rinse the chicken inside and out. Remove any excess fat and pat the outside dry. Salt and pepper the inside of the chicken. Stuff the cavity with the bunch of thyme, both halves of lemon, and all the garlic. Brush the outside of the chicken with the butter and sprinkle again with salt and pepper. Tie the legs together with kitchen string and tuck the wing tips under the body of the chicken. Place the onions, carrots, potatoes and fennel in a roasting pan. Toss with salt, pepper, 20 sprigs of thyme, and olive oil. Spread around the bottom of the roasting pan and place the chicken on top.

Roast the chicken for 1 1/2 hours, or until a meat thermometer register 160 in the breast meat.Remove the chicken and vegetables to a platter and cover with aluminum foil for about 20 minutes. Slice the chicken onto a platter and serve it with the vegetables.

*I did not take a picture of the beautiful chicken (sad day), but look at the Little Kitchen that Could's pictures of her beautiful chicken!

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