Cooking 101 - Basic Roasted Chicken

Believe it or not, folks, there are those of us out there who FEAR the whole cooking a bird thing. I've been running my own household for almost eleven years now and I'm finally starting to overcome this fear. I'll cook chicken, but a WHOLE bird?! Now that's just silly.

However, friends, I can buy a whole chicken for around $3.50 and roast it myself instead of paying $5.00 for a much smaller, rotisseree chicken at the store - plus I've got MUCH more meat for leftovers. So you're feeding your brood for $3.50 and you'll get two meals out of one chicken! (Now you can justify that $4.25 half-gallon of Haagen Daas.)

This entry is for those of you out there, who, like me, (and you know who you are...) WANT to have the roasted chicken but don't want the hassle. There are much fancier ways of doing this with all of the herb packets, kitchen twine, special pans and basting tools out there - but we're not doing any of that. Just basic stuff here!

We're going to wash the bird, rub him down, pop him in the oven, and wait. Before you know it, dinner's DONE and you hardly did anything.

(also works with whole chicken cut up)
Preheat your oven to 450

1.) Get your chicken, wash him off (don't get too attached, though, you ARE going to cook him.) Pat dry with a paper towel.

2.) Slap him in a 9 x 13" baking pan - breast-side-up

3.) Rub him down with olive oil, basic seasoning (salt, pepper, garlic powder), and an herb of your choice - I like basil or oregano. Don't complicate the flavor, though - just pick one. Do a little of that on the inside of the bird, too.

4.) Roast him for about 45 minutes, cover with foil, and roast approximately 20-30 minutes longer.

Let the chicken sit & rest after you pull it out of the oven - it will still cook a little bit and if you start cutting it up, you'll loose a lot of the good juices.

The chicken will be cooked through when the juices run clear or it registers 180 degrees on a meat thermometer.

REMEMBER: Every time you poke or pierce your meat, you loose juice and that means DRY CHICKEN. Don't poke or pierce until you absolutely have to check to see if it's done.

What to do with leftover chicken:

Use it for soups (Molly's Green Chili Soup)

Toss some chicken chunks in a garden salad

Whip up some chicken quesadillas with green chilies, cheese, beans & a side of salsa & sour cream

Chunky Chicken Salad:
chicken, sliced grapes, chopped celery, chunky pecans or cashews, Hellman's Light mayonaise (Hellman's is the BEST, by far), dash of salt. Combine - eat on bread, a whole wheat tortilla, or plain.


jayne said...

totally inspired me to do this! I've been wanting too, but been too intimidated and just stuck with the boughten rottiserie. Gonna try it tonight!

Tisha said...

Thanks Abby! As much as I love to cook, I have been terrified to do a whole bird! I am going to try it.

missliss5/Melissa said...

I can't.....I just hate man handling that raw meat. I've done a turkey a couple times because Dan was unavailable....can I just eat yours? (grin) Or perhaps this is a face your fears kind of thing!