Roasted Chicken

I have been a bad, bad blogger. I am so sorry that my last post was what, a week ago?

Last week I came down with something awful and was at home sick for 2 days. No fun. I had to have my finger pricked – and I absolutely hate all shapes and forms of needles. The nurse asked if my blood pressure was usually low, because where mine was – apparently people are about to pass out. It’s not the sight of blood I promise – it’s more the foreign object drawing it out of me.

Ummm, I bet you really want to see pictures of food right now huh?

Anyways, I apologize for being a bad blogger. Saturday I was feeling much better – enough to go see “The Hunger Games” with the husband. Love. I’m ready for the second movie like, now.

Sunday I was feeling SO much better that I was told to decided to do some much-needed yard work! Our incredibly mild fall/winter had a bunch of leaves falling quite late, meaning it was way too cold to get out there and scoop the remainder of them up. Well, no excuses anymore. And I have the sore muscles and sunburn to prove it. I even got a funny sunburn – I blame my pants being too large (hey, I told you the stuff I cook for you is usually good for you, right?) so bending down and scooping up leaves allowed me to get a glorious sunburn on my lower back. Yes, these kinds of random  things happen to me.

ANYWAYS – Friday night, I was trying to figure out some meal plans for the remainder of the month that would fit our grocery budget and realized I had a whole frozen chicken hanging out in the freezer since like, before our wedding. So I decided that would be dinner on Sunday. It’s frozen, so the expiration date which had passed didn’t really mean anything…right?

Now, I have made Cornish Game Hens before – and they were cute and fun. I roasted and stuffed a turkey years ago for my roommates in college – but that was for Thanksgiving and I had step-by-step instructions from my dad. (Thanksgiving dinner for 8 people with plastic utensils and no dishwasher…I can’t believe I survived.)

So I was a bit intimidated by this 5 1/2 pound chicken. But guess what. There was no reason to be! (Other than learning that next time I will try to find a chicken with the “innards” bagged up and stuffed inside rather than “going fishing”.) It really was quite easy and for just two of us, it made a LOT! So pick up a chicken, don’t wait for a year to roast it, and enjoy!

Roasted Chicken – Serves 4-6

1 whole, frozen chicken

Olive oil

Minced garlic (or fresh)

1-2 lemons

Rosemary

Sage

Thyme

Kosher salt

Black pepper

1-2 Tbsp. butter

Veggies, if you choose

Heat your oven to about 425 degrees.

I had about 1/2 pound of green snap beans, so I decided to use those, half an onion and 1  russet potato to make a complete meal in 1 dish. I chopped it all up, seasoned it with salt and pepper, and threw it in the bottom of a medium roasting pan. Feel free to do the same, modify, or leave this step out completely.

Next, open all of your spice containers (I would have LOVED to use fresh herbs, but I didn’t have any on hand – still tasted great) and pour some spices into prep bowls so you don’t get raw chicken over everything. I found myself juggling and using my teeth to open things. I blame the antibiotics for my lapse in judgment.

Run your whole chicken under cold water and rinse well. Get inside the cavity too. Drain what you can. Remove the “innards” – again, next time I will look to see if there are some that have this step done and have it all in a nice neat little bag to pull out.

Pat dry with paper towels. Lots of paper towels. Seriously.

Sprinkle the inside of the cavity with kosher salt, black pepper, sage and thyme. Add some garlic and spread around with your fingers. Cut a lemon or two in half and shove those up there as well. The chicken will forgive you.

Now, drizzle about 1 tsp. olive oil on one side of the chicken and rub on the skin with your hands. Add some kosher salt, black pepper and rosemary. Rub that in as well.

Using a sharp knife, make 2 incisions in the skin (about 1/2 inch wide) and smear a little softened butter in there, along with some garlic, rosemary and kosher salt.

Flip the bird (hee hee) and repeat, making sure the skin has a nice coating of olive oil and seasoning.

Place chicken in the roasting pan breast side up (I placed mine on top of veggies – if you don’t, maybe add just 1-2 Tbsp. liquid like chicken broth) and cook according to directions on the chicken. Mine took about 1 1/2 hours to cook through. Baste every 20-30 minutes. If your chicken starts browning, make a little tent with aluminum foil to prevent it from burning. A nice crispy skin is good, but burnt skin is not. (Says the girl with bright pink shoulders).

Remove chicken from oven and let sit 10 minutes before carving. You can test to see if it is done by cutting the base of the leg – if the juices run clear, it’s ready!

Carve the chicken and serve with your delicious roasted veggies which have absorbed all of the citrus-herb-butter-olive oil liquid.

For me, this is a great weekend dish because I can get a few things done while it’s cooking – but I’m not rushed like I would be during the week. And this was just for two of us – so we had some great leftovers to work with…

Sorry again for being M.I.A. the past week – I promise I’ll make it up to you with some more delicious recipes this week!

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