I love to make roast chicken. It’s inexpensive, easy to make, and the end result is very satisfying. The meat is moist and succulent underneath a crisp and slightly salty skin. The potatoes and onions roast under the chicken drippings and taste absolutely amazing. We made this earlier this week and ate the thighs and wings with the roasted vegetables, along with steamed broccoli topped with Parmigiano Reggiano. We saved the breast meat and used that in a pasta dish the next night. If you think roasting a whole bird takes a lot of work, let me assure you it doesn’t. It took only about 5 minutes to cut the veggies, and 5 minutes to prepare the chicken for roasting. The oven does the rest of the work.
serves: 2 with leftovers or 4 without
from: Barefoot Contessa Video
One 5-6 lb chicken, rinsed and patted dry
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 head of garlic, unpeeled and cut in half
1 lemon, quartered
5-6 tablespoons of unsalted butter, melted
carrots, cut into large chunks (optional)
red potatoes, quartered
Sprinkle the inside of the chicken generously with salt and pepper, then stuff the cavity with the quartered lemon and halved head of garlic. Tie the legs together with twine and tuck the wings under.
Place the onions, potatoes, and carrots if using in the bottom of a roasting pan. Place the chicken in the roasting rack over the vegetables (or right on top of the vegetables if desired). Brush the entire chicken with melted butter and let the rest of the butter fall over the chicken onto the vegetables beneath. Sprinkle the chicken and vegetables with salt and pepper.
Bake the chicken in the lower half of the oven on 425 for 65-80 minutes or until a thermometer reads at 165-170 in the thigh and 160-165 in the breast (and the juices run clear). The temperature will continue to rise after you remove the chicken from the oven, so it’s ok to remove it before it gets up to 180. At that point the bird will be overcooked once it rests and might not be as moist.
When the chicken is done set it on a large plate or platter to rest for at least 15 minutes so the juices can redistribute. Place foil loosely over the bird if desired. If the potatoes and onions need additional roasting time, place them back in the oven.
Serve the chicken alongside the potatoes and onions.