Monday, June 21, 2010

Roast a Chicken!

I rarely cook meat. I don't like having to wash my hands every half second when I'm handling the raw product. I don't like the chance of under cooking it and poisoning my dinner company. Therefore I overcook meat often, then get ticked that I served meat leather to my guests. Having said this, it was a big step for me to roast a chicken - an even bigger step for it to turn out very well.

I picked up this simple recipe from a grocery store. It looked easy enough, and it turns out it IS really easy.

Get a fresh roasting chicken at the store, and pick up a lemon and an orange while you're there. At home, get out a roasting pan or a dutch oven. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Make a mixture of salt and pepper in a little dish. Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper would be ideal. Make about a tablespoons worth. It doesn't have to be exact.

Here's where the trickiest part comes in. Carefully loosen the skin from the meat. Don't remove the skin, just lift it enough so that you can get a hand or a few fingers in there. Once the skin is loose, on both top and bottom of the bird, liberally rub the meat - under the skin - with the salt and pepper mixture on both sides.

Cut that lemon and orange into wedges and fill the cavity with them. For crispy skin, roast on a roasting pan with the built in drainage thingy so that the juices can run off of the bird. If you don't care for the skin, you can roast it in a dutch oven - uncovered. The chicken will cook in it's own juice leaving the skin soft and easily to peel off.

Let it roast for about one and a half to one and three quarters of an hour or until the meat is no longer pink, the juices run clear, and the drumsticks move easily or fall out of the socket. If you have a handy dandy meat thermometer, your bird is ready at 165 degrees.

I was amazed at how well my bird turned out. It was delicious! Not a stitch dry, completely cooked, and was a hit with my roommates. I'm SO doing this again.

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