View Full Version : Roast Chicken Perfection
03-11-2002, 01:10 PM
HI. I am making a roast chicken. Or, rather, I am roasting a chicken for some guests tonight and I wanted to know if there are any rules regarding time and temperature. My chicken is about 6lb, 12 oz. Should I put it in for a long time at a lower temperature,or vise versa.
Also, do you baste your chicken? Should you pierce the chicken before you put it in?
In addition, I have a questoin about gravy and how my mother used to make it. Her floavor was OK, but not great. She would just put the entire drippings into a pan, mix in some flour, and let it sit. She wouldn't let skim the fat off, nor would she raise the temperature to allow it thicken. But, the last time I tried to thicken it, it became very lumpy and spereated ( I tink the fat doesn't thicken with the rest of the drippings). So, is it really better to drip the fat off for reasons other than health or is there away to not drip the fat off. Thanks.
I'm probably too late to be of much help here. And I can't help you a bit when it comes to roasting times, though I tend to go with either 325 or 350 degrees as a rule. Am NOTORIOUS for undercooking poor birds. Don't you have a cookbook you can check?
Insofar as the basting goes, I think that's really a matter of personal preference. I do every 30 hour or so. Depending upon how the chicken is prepped, you may or may not have to use liquid. I've just recently done a method which slathers butter between the skin and meat (meaning you loosen the skin and slide your hand in there.) With this method, there's a ton of runoff to baste with, so I tip the pan to let the juices run out of the bird's cavity and baste with that. If your bird doesn't HAVE any juices in the beginning, you can splash a bit of wine over it to use as basting liquid. After an hour of cooking, you shouldn't need any further supplements.
As to the subject of slashing-- unless you are slathering the meat with some herbs or seasoning (and working the flavorings into the slashes) there's no need to slash it. You can season on top of the bird, or many people like to put seasonings between the skin and meat. Your choice, really.
Gravy. You know there was a thread on gravy recently. Two of 'em actually. If you run a search (upper right hand corner of your screen by FAQ) you can check them out.
I do NOT recommend making gravy as you've described. Gives you a pan of flour and fat basically, not your heathiest way to make gravy. You COULD pour off all but about a tablespoon of the fat, mix a bit of flour into that (an equal amount to make a paste or roux) and then slowly dilute with some chicken stock and cook a bit to the desired consistency. Or you could make a reduction basically by pouring off any liquid fats, deglazing your pan with the addition of a wineglass or two of wine (scraping all the goodies off the pan) and then boiling the mass down to about half its volume atop the stove.
Everyone has been raving about a chicken recipe Jewel posted a while back which seems to have pretty detailed cooking and prep instructions. If you think you might want to try something with a spicy chili twist, maybe it'll help you out.
Sorry I couldn't be of more help. Good luck!
03-11-2002, 06:06 PM
Here is how I make gravy, beef, chicken, or turkey.
After you remove the meat from the pan, DRAIN OFF ALL THE FAT THAT IS IN THE ROASTING PAN! You will find that there are little brown pieces stuck to the bottom of the roaster!HAHA!
That is where the gravy is going to come from! Place the roaster on your cooktop, get a wooden spoon and a glass of water.
Pour some of the water in the roaster, turn the heat to medium
and SCRAPE with the wooden spoon to loosen all those stuck on brown pieces (which you probably used to wash down the sink).
When all the pieces are now in the liquid (you can also use broth)
pour it all into a small saucepan, scape it all out into it.
Then, put it on the stove to heat to boiling, slowly add 1Tbsp of cornstarch which has been dissolved in a little water, not too thick
and add it to the stuff in the saucepan, stirring constantly. When it is the consistancy you want, you can add s & p if needed.
You can always adjust it by adding more water if to thick, or dissolve a little more constarch.
03-12-2002, 04:30 AM
That gravy advice looks expert... what I wish my Mom would have told me but didn't.
As far as roasting a chicken, I made the Barefoot Contessa Roast Chicken last night and it was hands down the best I've ever made. I don't know why... it was quite simple. Stuffed the cavity with a quartered lemon and a head of garlic, rubbed butter, salt and pepper on top of the bird, scattered a sliced onion around and roasted it at 425 for 1 1/2 hours. I didn't have any fresh thyme as she recommends, but it still came out really moist with a nice crackly skin. Mmmmm.
03-12-2002, 11:14 AM
I also love the Barefoot Contessa roasted chicken recipe. I have lots of fresh thyme, and that makes it even more outstanding. You'll have to try it that way. And, a few sprigs under the skin makes it really tasty! I've been meaning to try it w/ Rosemary too. The gravy you can make with that recipe (I do something similar to Curleytop's method) is really delicious. My boyfriend and I had that dish for Christmas Eve dinner (with all of the trimmings of course) instead of traditional turkey. It was wonderful.
I made the chile roasted chicken (the one everyone talks about from Epicurious) over the weekend. That one is really delicious too. The gravy is incredible--just like everyone says! I will have to alternate between that one and the Barefoot Contessa's.
03-12-2002, 11:21 AM
I "third" the Barefoot COntessa roast chicken. Having hated roast chicken for most of my life, I have discovered that high-heat roasting makes all the difference, even if you don't eat the skin. I made my Thanksgiving turkey on high heat!
As far as gravy goes, I think you have recieved some great advice. My trick is to scatter a few unpeeled garlic cloves in the bottom of the pan, and then pick them out of the pan juices (that I otherwise discard unless it is a celebration, in which case I am willing to have a little more fat) and squeeze the chicken fat roasted garlic into the deglazing-method (See Curlytop) gravy.
Also, next time try a smaller chicken. 6 pounds is tough to cook through without overdrying. I have no idea how big your family is, but my family of 2 gets 2 big, whitemeat-only meals out of a 3-3.5 lb chicken.
And don't forget to make chicken stock with the, ah, carcass.
(EEEEEW! SHE SAID CARCASS!)
03-12-2002, 01:42 PM
* Exported from MasterCook *
My Roast Chicken
Recipe By :
Serving Size : 0 Preparation Time :0:00
Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
7 pounds roasting chicken -- washed and patted
4 cloves fresh garlic (can use more -- I do!), peeled and
only 2 minced
1 whole lemon -- halved
2 sprigs fresh rosemary
1 whole medium onion -- peeled and chopped
salt and pepper
Wash the chicken well, pat dry with paper towels. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Loosen skin of chicken. Mix 2 tablespoons of softened butter and two cloves minced garlic if you like or leave it with just the garlic, my old recipe for chicken called for it this way but I omit the butter.
Gently lift the skin of the chicken up with your fingers, Place garlic and butter mixture under skin of chicken. Cut lemon in half. Rub half of lemon over chicken skin.
Sprinkle the cavity with salt and pepper. Fill cavity with remaining garlic, 2 sprigs of rosemary, onion, and lemon. Place in roasting pan. Drizzle with olive oil and dot with butter. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
For a 7 lb chicken preheat oven to 450 degrees, roast 20 minutes, then turn oven down to 375 degrees and continue roasting for 1 hour and 15 minutes. This is for my oven, you may want to check with a meat thermometer to make sure its cooked all the way through. Insert thermometer through the thickest part of the thigh, careful not to touch the bone, when it registers 170 take it out, let it rest on the counter tented in foil for at least 10-15 minutes, one of the most important parts, then its done! Slice and serve with gravy (recipe follows)
Start to Finish Time: 2:00
NOTES : To make a pan gravy, drain pan juices into a seperator. Add 1/4 cup dry white wine to the pan and a half a can of chicken broth (not Campbell's), scrape the pan getting all the brown bits up, boil for 2 minutes, add the other half can of chicken broth mixed with 2 1/2-3 tablespoons wondra flour and the pan juices back into the pan, season with salt and pepper, taste and bring to boil. Let boil until it is thickened.
03-13-2002, 09:48 AM
I can't believe that Gail bastes her chicken every 30 hours or so.... that poor chicken! Is there anything left of it by the time you are done roasting it?;)
Powered by vBulletin® Version 4.2.0 Copyright © 2013 vBulletin Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved.