Even though it’s still hot and steamy outside, there’s nothing like roasting a chicken. It feels so old fashioned and homey. What 20-somethings do you know who wake up early on the weekend to roast and baste a chicken? Probably not many! For some reason, when we saw this ‘lil Foster Farms bird just waiting to find a good home (aka oven), we knew we had to pick one up. Once you take them out of the bag, raw chickens do not look so cute anymore. Pale, naked, insecure–not fit for good eats. Ours needed dire assistance, a foodie makeover if you will. We consulted our arsenal of ingredients to do what we could to make him the best bird he could be.
One of the other nice things about roasting a chicken is that the process is so simple. All you really need is salt, pepper and olive oil or butter, and you’re fine. Anything above that is the ribbon on the box. We tossed in two of our favorite and most used herbs along with that tried and true citrus flavor to up the ante on this one. No longer timid and pale, this chicken was now juicy, flavorful and ready to be eaten. Clearly, just like Patti Labelle, this bird had a new attitude!
Citrus and Herb Roasted Chicken – Serves 6 to 8
4 1/2 pound whole chicken
15 sprigs rosemary (8 destemmed and roughly chopped, 7 whole)
20 sprigs thyme
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temp
1 orange, zested then sliced
5 scallions, chopped
6 cloves garlic, minced
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chicken broth
1. Remove chicken innards and rinse inside and outside of bird. Place in a deep baking dish or roasting pan.
2. Mix butter with olive oil and chopped rosemary, half of the scallions, half of the garlic, all of the orange zest and half of the thyme sprigs. (Don’t worry about the thyme stems. Leave them as they are.) Stir well until fully blended.
3. Stuff inside of chicken with remaining whole rosemary sprigs, thyme sprigs, garlic and scallions. Rub citrus herb butter on chicken, covering all parts of the bird completely.*
4. Season entire bird liberally with salt and pepper, then cover with orange slices.
5. Cover the chicken with foil and bake in a preheated oven at 425 degrees for 25-30 minutes.
6. Take chicken out of the oven, remove foil and pour in chicken broth. Mix broth with drippings in the pan and baste well. Put the chicken back in the oven, uncovered, and bake for another 25-30 minutes, basting frequently. If you have a meat thermometer, the thickest part of the chicken should register between 160 and 165 degrees.
*If you’d like to tie the bird’s legs with twine, you can. We left him open and free!
Click HERE for the printable recipe.
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