I serve this chicken often, and it always gets major compliments. While the chicken is roasting, it sends a mouthwatering aroma through the entire house. When it comes out of the oven, it’s golden and crispy on the outside, moist and tender on the inside. The secret is the marinade, which turns into a super delicious pan sauce you can pour all over the chicken—and over the mashed potatoes, if you are serving them. The other secret is to baste often.
Chicken Roasted to Perfection
- 3 cups chicken stock, homemade (page 64), or store-bought organic chicken broth
- 6-pound whole organic chicken, rinsed and dried
- ¾ cup Dijon mustard
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- Juice from 1 fresh lemon; keep lemon rind for stuffing
- ¹/3 cup light soy sauce
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- Several sprigs fresh parsley, or 1 tablespoon dry parsley
- Several sprigs fresh rosemary, or 1 tablespoon dry rosemary
- Several sprigs fresh thyme, or 1 tablespoon dry thyme
- ¼ cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
- Make the chicken stock first.
- Remove, gizzards, heart, neck, and liver from the cavity of the chicken. Rinse the chicken well inside and out. Pat dry and place in a large ziplock bag.
- To make the marinade, whisk together Dijon mustard, olive oil, lemon juice, and soy sauce. Add the garlic and mix well.
- Stuff the lemon rind into the chicken cavity along with half of the fresh parsley, rosemary, and thyme, if using. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Place the chicken in a heavy roasting pan. Wrap the tips of the drumsticks and the wings in small pieces of foil to protect them from burning while roasting. Pour the marinade over the bird and top with the remaining fresh herbs, if using, or sprinkle the dry herbs on the chicken. Cover (you can use heavy-duty aluminum foil if you don’t have a lid for the roasting pan). Seal tightly. Try to make sure the aluminum foil is not resting on top of the skin, or it will stick and come off when you remove the foil; leave an air pocket. Roast for 90 minutes with the foil on. Then remove the foil and continue to roast for an additional 30 minutes.
- Add 2 cups chicken stock. Using a wooden spoon, scrape the bottom of the roasting pan to loosen the bits that have collected on the sides and bottom of the pan. Baste the chicken well. Continue roasting uncovered for 60 minutes, basting every 15 minutes. Add chicken stock, if needed, a ladleful at a time to keep the bottom of the pan from burning.
- Remove the chicken from the oven. Remove the chicken from the roasting pan and place it on a carving board to rest for 10 minutes before carving. Cover lightly with foil.
- Add ½ cup chicken stock to the roasting pan, and stir to release any crusty bits that have collected on the bottom and sides of the pan. Place a strainer over another pot, and pour the juices from the roasting pan through the strainer. Remove the strainer and discard its contents. Skim off any oil that has risen to the top of the pan juices.
- Carve the chicken, pour the pan juices over the meat, and sprinkle with chopped parsley.
I know the cooking time may seem long, and it is—3 hours for a 6-pound chicken—but if you baste it as often as I suggest, every half hour or so, you will have a tender, fall-off-the-bone, mouthwatering chicken! I like to marinate the chicken in a large ziplock bag overnight in the refrigerator, but if you don’t have time to do that, you can pour the marinade over the chicken and bake right away.
Thank you to Cristina for a wonderful week here on Amuse Bouche. Be sure to get your copy of Where Women Cook today for more from Cristina Ferrare!