Awhile back, Hubby and I were talking about the fact that a can of chicken noodle soup has a bunch of sodium, even the lightly salted version one. I mentioned that we need to make our own chicken noodle soup, that it would be definitely have less sodium, and it would not have any preservatives in it. We also talked about lunch meats, that those fast, easy-to-make sandwich meats, were also packed with sodium. So, we were talking about some alternatives for Hubby to eat during lunch, and we ended up deciding that we’ll roast some chickens. Hubby can eat part of the breast meat and I would use the carcasses to make chicken noodle soup.
So, when I went to Sam’s two Fridays ago, I got a couple of bags of whole chickens. I decided that I would try Pastor Ryan’s Herb Roasted Whole Chicken that looks so easy, fast and delicious. Pastor Ryan did not marinate the chicken overnight and used the time for preheating the oven to rub the chicken with herbs. No sitting for an hour or two either, nothing is any easier and faster than that!
Mind you, that this is the first time I roasted whole chickens by myself. Prior experience had been helping Hubby cook, but not cooking it myself. So, get ready for my trial and error!
Chicken(s), onions, lemon, garlic, some herbs (dried, since I didn’t have any fresh ones. I used rosemary, thyme, and oregano), salt and pepper. That’s it!
First,I quartered the lemon and onion so they would fit into the chicken’s cavity. I broke the garlic open by mashing it with the knife’s blade, so the flavor would come out.
Then I mixed up the herbs, salt and pepper into a ramekin, and poured some canola oil into the ramekin.
Stirred it up, and I have made the herbs ready for the chickens!
Then I washed up the chickens, emptied out the cavities and patted them dry. PR mentioned that it is important to pat the chickens dry, since it will affect the crusting of the skins.
Then, I inserted my fingers between the skin and the breast itself, separating the membrane connecting the skin and the breast. Some of the comments to PR’s post mentioned that they also put the herbs between the skin and the breast, resulting in “the succulent moist taste and the herbs go more directly into the meat”. Also, I just noticed (duh….) that she mentioned to be gentle with the skin, so that the skin won’t tear. In my haste, I poked holes and tore the skin. So, be gentle if you decide you want to go this route… 🙂
Then, I stuffed the chicken cavity with the garlic, onion and lemon. As I was selecting the pictures for the post, I realized that this picture is not that pretty. Well, we’re looking at the chicken’s bottom for Pete’s sake! Ha ha… Who is Pete anyway? Anyway, I decided to post it regardless. It is part of my documentary project, right? 🙂
Then, I poured the herbs on to the chickens…
And when the herbs were all rubbed on the chickens, they looked like this picture below. Notice that I elevated the chickens on a rack, since I didn’t want them to sit on their own melted fat. Also, if you cook it this way, you can put some cut up veggies and potatoes under the chicken, and you will have a complete meal by the time the chicken is done. Then, I threw the chicken into a preheated oven at 450F.
Now, I varied the time of cooking here. In the comments section to PR’s post, a lady mentioned that the 450F for 1 hour and 15 minutes did not work for her. She got homegrown 5-6 pounders, and those chickens I got were about 5 lbs each. So I decided to follow her method, but I found out that I still have to figure it out further next time. She uses 450F for the first 20 minutes to sear the skin and lock the juices in. Then, she turned the temperature down to 375F and cook for one hour, and then 350F for another 40 minutes or until the chicken is done. One of my chickens came out with still pink near the bone, so I will have to tweak the cooking temperature and time next time. But I wasn’t too worry since the chickens will be reheated and cooked some more.
This is how the chicken looked like after they were done.
Aren’t they delicious looking? Let the chicken rest for 10-15 minutes before you cut them up, so the juices will redistribute itself; otherwise you will end up with a dry chicken. To read more about letting meat rest, click here.
Well, the next time you want some roasted chicken, try Pastor Ryan’s recipe, use the herbs you like, and you will surprise yourself. Happy eating! 🙂
Print recipe here.
Pastor Ryan’s Herb Roasted Whole Chicken
Recipe adapted from Pastor Ryan
3-4 lbs Whole Chicken
Something to stuff inside the chicken (Apple, Onion, Lemon, Garlic, Carrot, etc..)
Salt and Pepper
Fresh Herbs (I used dried Rosemary, Thyme, Oregano)
Preheat oven to 450 F degrees.
Mix the herbs together. If use fresh ones, chopped and mix.
Add in salt and pepper to the mixed herbs.
For EACH chicken you’ll be roasting, you’ll need:
* 1-2 Tablespoons of chopped herbs
* 1 Tablespoon of salt (kosher is best)
* 1 Teaspoon of pepper
Add 2 – 3 tablespoons of canola oil into the mixed herbs and stir.
Rinse chicken, empty the cavity, and pat dry.
Fill the cavity of birds with the quartered veggies/fruit/herbs.
Rub the chicken all over with the herb mix. Also insert the herbs under the skin by loosening the tissue connecting the meat and skin gently.
Put chicken on an elevated rack, cook for 450F for an hour to an hour and fifteen minutes until the chicken is golden brown and have developed a delicious crust. Adjust time as necessary.
When the chicken is done, let it rest for 10-15 minutes before cutting.
Note: Pastor Ryan’s note about trussing chicken: “Yo’ll notice that I didn’t truss the chicken with any sort of butcher’s twine or anything. Normally this is just fine. If you notice the legs popping out too far (which can cause them to get overly brown) during the roasting process, you can always make a small cut in the skin itself and pop the legs through it as I’ve done with this particular chicken.”
I’m not sure how this is done… so I need to do more research on this.
Other comments on PR’s post:
“Try inserting a few cloves of garlic in various spots under the skin”
“Also, you can cut carrots length wise and lay them on the bottom of the pan; then place your chickens on top. Then chop up some potatoes and place them around the pan next to the chickens. Melt some butter and brush it on the potatoes. Sprinkle them with the herbs and Salt/pepper. The juice from the chickens will cook the carrots and the potatoes. Its a whole meal in one pan!”