Everyone can roast a chicken, the only thing you need is a oven and a chicken.
But getting a moist chicken with a crispy golden brown skin is more difficult. One option is a beer can chicken - roasting the chicken while is't sitting on a beer can (or roaster) filled with beer or wine. We always do this on the BBQ, but some days are not BBQ-ing days, at least not in Denmark.
I wanted to try out Thomas Kellers way to roast a chicken in the oven. And to be honest I didn't read the recipe before the afternoon of making it. That was a mistake, a big mistake. I had to brine the chicken in the refrigerator for 6 hours. Well this didn't happen with this bird, but it turned out great. I don't think I've had a roasted chicken this moist ever. But some day I have to try to brine a chicken, I'll keep you posted.
This is how I made the roasted chicken.
Serves 4-5 people.
- 1 chicken ( 2,24-2,50 lb)
- coarse sea salt (a fair amount)
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 2 teaspoons thyme leaves
Clean the chicken, removing the layer of fat from the opening. Remove the giblets. I never rinse the chicken under water, this will spread bacteria such as salmonella.
Preheat the oven to 475°F (250°C).
Pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Season the chicken inside with salt and pepper. I always take a handful of salt in a cup, and add some pepper, and use this for seasoning. If there is any salt left I discard it. There's no need to spread bacteria all over.
From Thomas Keller: "Truss the chicken by placing the chicken on a tray with the legs towards you. Tuck the wing tips under the chicken. Cut a piece of cooking twine about 3 feet (1 meter), and center it on top of the neck end of the breast. Lift the neck end of the chicken and pull the twine down around the wings and under the chicken, then bring the ends up over the breast, towards you, and knot the twine, pulling it tight to plump the breast. Bring the ends of the twine around the ends of the drumsticks and straight up. Tie as before to pull the drumsticks together and form a compact bird; tie again to secure knot."
I did it my way, and tried my best to get the compact chicken. Let the chicken rest for 30 minutes at room temperature.
Season the chicken with salt - you have to use a lot.
Heat a ovenproof skillet and heat the oil before placing the chicken breast side up in the skillet. This way the skin won't stick to the skillet. Put the skillet in the hot oven, with the chicken legs facing the back of the oven.
Roast for about 40 minutes, rotate the skillet if the chicken is browning unevenly. Check the temperature by inserting an instant-read thermometer between the bird and the thigh. When the temperature is about 155°F (69°C), remove it from the oven. The chicken will continue to cook as it sits, and reach a temperature of about 165°F (75°C). Add the thyme leaves to the skillet, and baste the chicken several times with the juices and thyme leaves. Let it sit and rest for about 10 minutes.
Remove the twine and carve the chicken, and serve with your favorite starchy side or vegetables.