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  • How Do You Roast Your Chicken?

    A cooked rotisserie chicken from the grocery store has been a staple of mine for a long time. It is one of my favorite foods! However, In an effort to cut out the additives and preservatives that are found in prepared foods I would like to roast my own. There are a million different roast chicken recipes online so I was wondering if someone could point me in the direction of one that you thought actually tasted like rotisserie chicken so I can eliminate some of the trial and error I would have to go through in recipe testing. Thanks!

  • #2
    (This is what I do though I'm not sure how close to rotisserie chicken it will be-its been years since I had one and I've forgotten how they taste.)

    The basic recipe:
    Remove guts from chicken. Pat dry. Season inside and out with salt, garlic, and pepper. Bake breast-side up at 375 degrees for about an hour (till done), baste occasionally if you remember (I usually don't). The chickens I get are usually fatty and even though I trim off as much fat as possible they don't end up dry or tough cooking this way.

    Modifications:
    Wrap with bacon
    Stuff bits of butter under the skin (helps to get the skin really crispy and keep breast meat from drying out-also adds flavor)
    Season with salt, garlic, rosemary, and lemon-pepper inside and out. (Also lay thin slices of lemon over breast area to add lemon flavor)
    Slather BBQ sauce on the last 15-20 minutes of cooking


    Something I've been doing lately to get baked chicken, veggies, and gravy all at once:

    Brown all sides in duck fat using an oven-safe pan. Once brown lay breast-side up and add carrots, onions, and celery to pan and inside chicken. Bake in 350 degree oven for 45 minutes (or till done).
    Remove chicken, set aside to rest.
    Strain veggies from pan liquids for a side dish.
    Add about a cup of water, chicken broth or wine to pan and deglaze the pan. Add 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup heavy cream if you want a creamier gravy. Simmer and reduce to desired thickness. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. You can also leave the veggies in and use an immersion blender to blend them in with the cooking liquids for a thicker gravy.

    You can also pan-fry mushrooms in the cooking liquid and make a tasty gravy from there.
    See what I'm up to: The Primal Gardener

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    • #3
      Hello fellow San Diegan!

      Cooking a chicken is really pretty easy. Stick it in the oven at 350 till crispy golden. Maybe turn it over once in the middle of cooking to get both sides evenly.

      From there you can get as fancy as you want to. Try taking a whole lemon and giving it minor stab wounds all over then insert that in the chicken and roast. The lemon flavor infuses into the meat.

      Also add your basic salt and pepper rubdown of the bird before cooking plus any seasonings that tickle your taste buds. A little cayenne pepper is nice and give a pretty color as well.

      Then you can talk about stuffings, but that is a whole different subject.

      Give it a try. Not that hard.

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      • #4
        I do two things, depending on mood:

        Stand the bird up on an upright chicken roaster stand thingy and roast OR

        Spatchcock it and lay it out in a roasting pan. (Spatchcocked chicken is just when you cut through the bird from neck to tail along the backbone in order to lay it out flat - that is all. The breasts are still connected. I have proper poultry shears that do that job in a jiffy, safely.)

        In both cases I rub down with a generous portion of any seasoned salt that takes my fancy at the time (I have several in my spice cabinet). If your bird has some fat on it - all the better, as you will have moist meat that way. Literally roast until the skin is crispy - plain old 350F is good.

        Like Paleobird said, from there you can get fancy. Sometimes I like to rub butter and herbs between the skin and muscles.
        I have a mantra that I have spouted for years... "If I eat right, I feel right. If I feel right, I exercise right. If I exercise right, I think right. If I think right, I eat right..." Phil-SC

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        • #5
          I always do it butterfly--remove the backbone then lay each half in a pan.

          Sometimes I'll blast it for like ~8 minutes at 475F to crisp the skin then reduce to 350 until done.
          I'm pretty lazy with the seasonings though. The most effort I'll do is get some "poultry" blend of refrigerated herbs, chop, and sprinkle before cooking. I have an old bottle of Ali's barbecue sauce that works too (uses stevia and molasses).
          37//6'3"/185

          My peculiar nutrition glossary and shopping list

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          • #6
            Glad to hear you're wanting to do it yourself. As an added benefit you can use the leftover bones and carcass to make stock, which is one of the best things to have sitting around the kitchen.

            Simple is best. Season it with salt and pepper, truss it with a string, then stick it in the oven at high temperature (usually 425 or 450) for about 50-60 minutes.

            This recipe has never failed me: My Favorite Simple Roast Chicken Recipe at Epicurious.com

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            • #7
              I'm a big fan of the beer can method for the grill. But it is not quite the same as rotisserie. I bought a Ronco Compact Rotisserie, like THIS ONE, for when I gotta have rotisserie.
              Follow my progress at ->Journal: My Body Revival



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              • #8
                Thank you all for the suggestions! I think I'll pick one up for roasting this weekend and probably start simple with salt, pepper, lemon & butter.

                I also like the idea of using the carcass to make stock, since I make LOTS of soups! I haven't made my own before, do you add other things like seasonings or veggies or is it just straight up chicken? And how long can I expect it to last in the fridge? Should I freeze it if I'm not planning on using it right away?

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                • #9
                  I always brine a chicken before roasting it, for at least 24 hours. It's pretty simple...make a brine of 1/4c. salt to a gallon of water, add whatever herbs and spices you like. Toss your bird in a bag, cover it with the brine, tie up the bag and put it in the fridge (in a big bowl or something for stability and to save the day if the bag leaks/tears). After brining, rinse the bird well, inside and out, then pat dry and season it how you want. I like rubbing the breast (under the skin) with butter, then stuffing smashed garlic cloves and slices of lemon between the meat and skin. More butter rubbed on the outside, salt and pepper all over, maybe some slices of lemon and springs of dill or rosemary in the cavity then roast at 350 until it's done. The stand-up beer can roaster things work really well.

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                  • #10
                    I like to spatchcock the bird myself. I melt butter, then add some minced tarragon and marjoram and brush that over the bird. Then salt liberally, add pepper and put bird on a wire rack over a roasting pan. In the pan, I put cut up potatoes, onions and carrots - all of the chicken fat and butter will drench the potatoes and veggies. The potatoes and veggies will be ridiculously tasty. Put it in a 350 degree oven for 45 minutes, take out and baste, then back in until its done. I'll turn the oven off and leave the bird there for a bit, seems to crisp the skin up more.

                    Mark did a recent post on perfect roast chicken, but I didn't think his skin got dark or crispy enough. He is right that you shouldn't rinse the bird and that it needs to be dry before you season it.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Pax View Post
                      I also like the idea of using the carcass to make stock, since I make LOTS of soups! I haven't made my own before, do you add other things like seasonings or veggies or is it just straight up chicken? And how long can I expect it to last in the fridge? Should I freeze it if I'm not planning on using it right away?
                      You can do it both ways:

                      Plain bones with just some salt and a splash of vinegar to help extract that goodness. OR

                      Bones with salt and a splash of vinegar and added veggies and herbs.

                      The difference will depend on the ultimate use for your broth - if you are doing some Asian cooking and need plain chicken broth, I doubt you would want European kitchen herb flavor in that batch, for example. On the other hand, if you are making American-style chicken soup, then that would be absolutely yummy.

                      My usual batch of add-ins is this: to the bones and chickeny bits - a head of garlic simply sliced across the middle, an onion sliced in half, sea salt, peppercorns, fresh parsley stem and all, a tomato sliced in half, a couple of carrots snapped into a couple of pieces, a couple stalks celery snapped on half, some fresh thyme if my herb garden is producing at the time, and a fresh bay leaf if I have some on hand. I peel nothing - the hot water sterilizes everything. Sometimes I slice off the root end of the garlic if it is actually dirty. When everything is simmered to the point at which all veggies are limp and tasteless, I am done. Then I strain and use right away or refrigerate.

                      We normally never freeze broth because it gets eaten too fast at this house to ever make it there... I have four broth-loving teens/preteens and a hubby to feed.

                      Just use a pot big enough to prevent overboiling, and keep the lid on. And I always simmer, not boil - I taste a difference between the hard-boiled and simmered broth. In that vein, a crock pot works well, too!

                      I know you are asking about chicken stock, but the best stock I have recently made was with mixed bones from chicken, turkey, pork with the plain sea salt and vinegar. Oh, wow. And don't worry about the vinegar - its smell and taste completely, totally disappears during cooking.
                      Last edited by Crabbcakes; 06-04-2013, 05:20 PM.
                      I have a mantra that I have spouted for years... "If I eat right, I feel right. If I feel right, I exercise right. If I exercise right, I think right. If I think right, I eat right..." Phil-SC

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by lemontwisst View Post
                        I always brine a chicken before roasting it, for at least 24 hours. It's pretty simple...make a brine of 1/4c. salt to a gallon of water, add whatever herbs and spices you like. Toss your bird in a bag, cover it with the brine, tie up the bag and put it in the fridge (in a big bowl or something for stability and to save the day if the bag leaks/tears). After brining, rinse the bird well, inside and out, then pat dry and season it how you want. I like rubbing the breast (under the skin) with butter, then stuffing smashed garlic cloves and slices of lemon between the meat and skin. More butter rubbed on the outside, salt and pepper all over, maybe some slices of lemon and springs of dill or rosemary in the cavity then roast at 350 until it's done. The stand-up beer can roaster things work really well.
                        I don't like the rubbery skin with conventionally brined chicken. This works really well and keeps a crispy skin

                        Injection-Brining

                        especially if you leave the bird out to dry externally for a couple of hours, and then gently ease butter between the skin and the breast.

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                        • #13
                          I dunno how rotisserie chicken tastes, never bought one, but I make dry roasted birds the same way always. Paper-towel dry the skin, salt and pepper the cavity, pour salt all over the outside, plop onto the baking rack (I make 2 at a time), bake for 20 min at 450 and for another 45 (or longer) on 325 till done. Crispy skin, tender flesh, juicy.

                          I roast vegetables in the run-off collected juices/fat separately as I find that the bed of vegetables slows the cooking and soggies up the skin.

                          And, yeah, we collect all bones in the bones bucket for stocks.
                          Last edited by Leida; 06-05-2013, 07:19 AM.
                          My Journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread57916.html
                          When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.

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                          • #14
                            I always slow-cook the bird first and then stick it under the grill to crisp the skin. I rub the 2.5lbs chicken with butter mixed with herbs, garlic or whatever spice I feel like, put it on one of those disposable aluminium roasting trays and pack it into slowcooker for 4-5hours, I pour a little bit of water around the tray but never into the tray. After this the bird is done and meat is literally falling of the bone, it's just the skin that needs a little bit more attention, so it goes under the grill at the highest temp for half an hour or less, I flip the bird over at the halftime to get both side done equally. I prepare my side dishes while the chicken is grilling. Delicious! with next to no effort and cheaper on our electricity bills

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Pax View Post
                              Thank you all for the suggestions! I think I'll pick one up for roasting this weekend and probably start simple with salt, pepper, lemon & butter.

                              I also like the idea of using the carcass to make stock, since I make LOTS of soups! I haven't made my own before, do you add other things like seasonings or veggies or is it just straight up chicken? And how long can I expect it to last in the fridge? Should I freeze it if I'm not planning on using it right away?
                              I like to add onions and carrots, maybe some herbs like thyme or bay leaves for more flavor. You can save all the roots of veggies to throw into stock, that works really well. Stock should be good for at least a week in the fridge, and freeze it if you're going to be waiting longer than that to use it.

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