Oven Roasted Chicken

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Simple and Clean Whole Roasted Chicken

If you’re intimidated by the idea of a “whole chicken,” it is most likely because you aren’t quite sure what to do with it!  I get it! It’s big, sorta expensive, and sometimes it still has the little tiny feathers attached.  Totally wierd, and something you MUST overlook.  Don’t worry.  Most people (accept for my husband) don’t eat the skin, anyway.

Stay with me here.

Don’t be intimidated. I promise it’s EASY.  I’m going to line it out, quick and simple ::

ERP_9180You’re whole chicken should be between 3.25-4.25lbs.  I cook for a family of five. Four of which are (almost always) HANGRY boys. We can eat a 3.75lb bird, easily, but I like to have a little left over for a salad the next day, or sometimes even more to throw into a soup later in the week!  I try to find a bird in the 3.75-4lb range.

Set your oven to 415 degrees. Lower your top rack to allow room for the roasting pan and chicken.

First, rinse your bird, and pat dry. If there is anything in the cavity, pull it out! Sometimes a neck, livers and gizzards. **shutter! BLEH**  It is what it is, folks!

Gather a small bunch of herbs.  I like Thyme and Sage!  But you could also use Rosemary, or anything you find locally.  I was able to find these cool rubber bands that I use to bind my herbs and chicken carcass. A quick search on Amazon, and found these Rubber Bands which are VERY similar. Make sure to inform your husband that these rubber bands can be washed and reused, before he cuts them with scissors and throws them away… (SMH)

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Begin to fill the cavity with the onion, apple, garlic and herbs. It’s sorta like a puzzle. You’ve gotta shove it in there, and rearrange till it all fits!  Use your rubber band or twine to pull the legs tight. Wrapping around several times to hold all the items in the cavity.

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Mix your Olive Oil, Salt, Pepper, and Paprika in a small bowl.  You can use butter as an alternative, just melt it before you mix it. The mixture should look like a paste.  You can add more oil or salt to thicken or thin.

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Next, massage the mixture into the skin of the chicken. I have tried to work it under the skin, but, honestly, it’s just not worth the effort. The spices will seep into the skin, and eventually into the meat.  So, it’s not that it can’t or shouldn’t be done!  If you have the time and patience, FEEL FREE!  But this is quick and simple y’all.  I start by rubbing it onto the breast area, into the creases, and then flip it over. Finishing with the back and butt of the chicken.

The key here is to cook the bird BREAST DOWN.  The breast meat is the thickest, and most of the time it is the driest portion of the bird.  So, it seems most logical to cook that part facing down.  This way all the juices from the onion, apple and garlic have time to seep down into the meat.

Now, you’re ready to go!  Throw that bird in the oven at 415 degrees for 15 minutes.  Then, turn your temperature down to 375 degrees for another 50 minutes. It’s as easy as THAT!

ERP_9214Use a cooking thermometer, and insert the tip into the meatiest portion of the bird.  Usually the breast.  Try to aim for the middle.  You want to make sure the thickest part of the bird is cooked through.  About 175 degrees.  Depending on the size of the bird, you may want to cook it for a bit longer.  An extra 10 minutes at a time.

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Once the chicken has reached 175 degrees, cover with foil, and let rest for at least 20 minutes.  I have let mine sit for as long as 1.5 hours, and it is perfectly fine!  It continues to cook as long as it is covered.

ERP_9223ERP_9221The chicken should have a nice crust all over.

To serve, I start by removing the rubber band from the legs.  Then, I pull the legs away from the bird.  I serve those on the bone to whichever boy comes running to the kitchen first.  Yes, there is usually a race.  I, then, peel away the skin from the back and remove any small peices of meat that are left.  Next, I flip the bird over, and begin to peel away the remaining skin and discard. Unless my husband finds it first. Ew. It tastes good! But, it’s skin, y’all, and I saw those tiny feathers with my own two eyes.  I’ll pass.

Pull all the breast meat off, and if you’re REALLY hungry, don’t forget the wings.

I serve this chicken with Garlic Potatoes and Broccoli.  Just to keep it all simple.  This is a HEALTHY hearty recipe to say the least.

Ingredients

1 Whole Chicken skin on 3.25-4.25lbs

1/4 Cup Olive Oil or melted Butter

3 Tbsp Kosher Salt

1/2 tsp Paprika

1/2 tsp Pepper

1/3 Apple

1/2 Onion Small bunch of Herbs

2 Cloves Garlic

Directions

Set your oven to 415 degrees. Lower your top rack to allow room for roasting pan and chicken.

First, rinse your bird, and pat dry. If there is anything in the cavity, remove it.  Gather your small bunch of herbs, and tie with rubber bands or twine. Begin to fill the cavity with the onion, apple, garlic and herbs.Use your rubber band or twine to pull the legs tight. Wrapping around several times to hold all the items in the cavity.

Mix your Olive Oil, Salt, Pepper, and Paprika in a small bowl. The mixture should look like a paste.  You can add more oil or salt to thicken or thin. Next, massage the mixture into the skin of the chicken. Rub it onto the breast area, into the creases, and then flip it over. Finishing with the back and butt of the chicken.

Make sure the breast is facing down.  Place in the oven for 15 min at 415 degrees.  After 15 min, turn the temperature down to 375 degrees.  From this point, cook for about 50 minutes. Check the internal temperature with a thermometer in the thickest part of the breast. Continue cooking for an additional 10 minutes at a time, until chicken reaches 175 degrees.

Once the chicken has reached 175 degrees, cover with foil, and let rest for at least 20 minutes. It should have a nice crust all over.  Serve per the instructions above!

If you decide to make this, PLEASE let me know by commenting below!! Also, post any comments or questions, if you have them! Enjoy.

-Erica

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