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lullyloo

Roasting a Chicken

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Check out this thread for a great discussion of brining, spatchcocking and the wonderful "Chef Fowke Truss".

The instructions for that unusual "truss," if memory serves, were sketchy at best. I was hoping someone would do a more thorough pictoral discription of how to do it. I have been unable to reproduce it.

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The picture that Chef Fowke posted, of a cooked chicken, doesn't show you how it's done. If you scroll to the very end of the thread, you'll see that Darren Vengroff posted some photos of the Fowke truss done on a raw chicken. The truss sounds and looks counterintuitive, but it sure works well. I now prepare all roasting chickens this way, including those done on a spit.


Jonathan Day

"La cuisine, c'est quand les choses ont le go�t de ce qu'elles sont."

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I make up a 'green goo' that's rubbed all over the bird, under the skin:

juice of one lemon

a few Tbs of evoo

oregano

thyme

basil

salt

pepper

This should be very liquid, almost like a heavy salad dressing.

La la's Green GOO! It looks very good! :smile:

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Alton Brown style is easy and great. At risk of sounding like a broken record, the basic recipe is: brine, spatchcock, very hot pan. Here is the detailed recipe from the FoodTV website. I usually use white wine instead of red for the jus, and I have frequently experimented with different under-skin seasonings -- my favorite thus far is butter, rosemary, lemon juice, and lots of salt.

Seriously, try spatchcocking your bird. Once you've got it down, it takes under a minute to perform, and you'll never even think about trussing again.


Don Moore

Nashville, TN

Peace on Earth

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I don't truss or spatchcock. Somehow my birds get cooked anyway. :wink:

Actually, I really don't get trussing. It makes the birds take longer to cook and there's less crispy skin. For a small chicken you're going to carve in the kitchen and not at the table (i.e. presentation isn't that important), it seems like a waste of time.

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The picture that Chef Fowke posted, of a cooked chicken, doesn't show you how it's done. If you scroll to the very end of the thread, you'll see that Darren Vengroff posted some photos of the Fowke truss done on a raw chicken. The truss sounds and looks counterintuitive, but it sure works well. I now prepare all roasting chickens this way, including those done on a spit.

Perhaps because the turssing method is so counterintuitive is why I an unable to master it. I saw Darren's photo's and they did not help me.

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I've never spatchcocked in my life :biggrin: So I doubt I will this time. I'm pretty sure I'm going to try Rachel's teriyake marinade with pineapple slices and orange juice this time. :smile:


Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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I don't like to spatchcock my crapaudine. Many do, though.

Paul


-Paul

 

Remplis ton verre vuide; Vuide ton verre plein. Je ne puis suffrir dans ta main...un verre ni vuide ni plein. ~ Rabelais

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I never even heard of spatchcocking until I found eGullet. So I tried it, and I am sold. Seriously. Learn to do it. It's easy, fun, and will make roasting a chicken about as difficult as frying bacon.


Don Moore

Nashville, TN

Peace on Earth

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While we're on the subject of roast chickens, the last poster's comment about a 4 lb. bird got me thinking about what the optimal size is for a roasting chicken. A four-pounder sounds more like a fryer to me. Around here (DC) the Giant sometimes puts their Perdue Oven Stuffer Roasters on sale for about 69 cents/lb. They typically weigh in at 7-8 lbs. I like leftovers. Is there a qualitive difference in taste between the bigger and smaller birds?

Judy Rogers specifies a small-ish (3.5lb or smaller) chicken for roasting as a kind of guarantee of succulent flesh: a smaller chicken has a greater skin-to-flesh ratio, and therefore a greater fat-to-flesh ratio, giving you a bird that can literally be cooked in its own fat with no added lipids needed to preserve moistness. Her recipe doesn't call for any kind of butter or oil under or over the skin.

Makes sense to me. I've cooked scores of chickens with her method (sometimes skipping the long salt-ahead process), always with great success.

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While we're on the subject of roast chickens, the last poster's comment about a 4 lb. bird got me thinking about what the optimal size is for a roasting chicken. A four-pounder sounds more like a fryer to me. Around here (DC) the Giant sometimes puts their Perdue Oven Stuffer Roasters on sale for about 69 cents/lb. They typically weigh in at 7-8 lbs. I like leftovers. Is there a qualitive difference in taste between the bigger and smaller birds?

I find that I use different sized birds for different purposes. And, after much experimentation, I have concluded that the bigger the bird, the lower the temperature. For my Coconut Glazed Chicken recipe, the bigger the bird the better. It is done at 325F for about one half hour per pound. No, it doesn't have a crispy skin but my crispy chicken skin freak friends always request this recipe when I am going to cook them a chicken.

For every day throw-it-in-the-oven-and-eat roast chicken, what we typically get is 4 to 4 1/2 lb. chickens because that is what there is.

I would dearly love to get 3 to 3 1/2 pounders for pan fried chicken. The smaller pieces cook just right before the crust gets too dark. Alas... The little suckers are hard to find.


Linda LaRose aka "fifi"

"Having spent most of my life searching for truth in the excitement of science, I am now in search of the perfectly seared foie gras without any sweet glop." Linda LaRose

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I think the most important tool for cooking chicken is a probe thermometer such as this one (which is currently having a great sale):

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detai.../egulletcom-20/

I like setting it to about 5 degrees lower than my goal temp and setting the alarm.

Personally I use an oven 450-500 degrees and remove the backbone (is that butterflying or spatchcocking?) and set it skin side up on a broiler pan (usually covered with foil) nicely seasoned. Then I cook it until it's golden, but not too much, and turn down the oven to 350-400 so that it doesn't overbrown before it's done. The skin gets nicely crisped and the fat renders off.

There may be better methods, but this one works quite well and is plenty easy. The thermometer makes any decent method nearly foolproof.

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I did, I did roast the chicken! I used your method Rachel, using a Teryiake marinade, some orange juice on a bed of pinapple slices. I marinaded the bird in the Teriyake marinade for an hour and a half. Roasted in a convection 325 oven for two hours. I covered the wings and legs for the first hour and then let them crisp up as well. We served it with a cornbread stuffing recipe (baked in a pan) that I found and brocoli and cheese sauce.

It was awesome. We agreed we need to buy more roasting chickens and experiment further :biggrin:


Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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For a different stuffing I sometimes get my stale (french or wholemeal) bread and break it up into small pieces, coat with milk (not too much - just enough to have the bread wet), I add a small to medium chopped onion,, chopped garlic (to taste) I use about 2-3 cloves, a chopped tomato. herbs (either thyme, provence, etc - strong flavored) and a crumbled stock cube or cut back on the milk and add some liquid home made stock. (check for salt and pepper as needed) Good helping of chopped parsley. Squeeze and mush it up with hands till nice and well mixed.

** Sometimes add good red pepper (cayenne) or a creole/cajun type seasoning.

Stuff into the cavity and cook as usual.

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zuni chicken with bread salad tonight, salted 3 days in the fridge.

o my.

Salt, I salute ye.

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maybe this is off topic. perhaps insted of one big bird two little birds? I always have more sucess with smaller chickens, and find them to be tastier too.

I crank the heat as high as it will go (and don't peek for at least a half hour) until the skin is light brown . then i drop it to 350 then cook it the rest of the way. I salt and pepper and butter or olive oil the chicken before it goes in. as far as herbssometimes a few sprigs of rosemary in the cavity. i like to throw a bag of baby carrots into the bottom of the roasting pan. they carmelize and become very sweet and the fat dresses them nicely.

also.

don't forget to tie you bird for a more even cooking time. tie the "ankles" together (at the bottom of the drumstick) as well as a tie around the breast holding the wings against the sides.

don't peek to much and dont forget to baste.


does this come in pork?

My name's Emma Feigenbaum.

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A few rather idiosyncratic traits when I roast:

I roast 2 chickens but remove the breasts of both birds. I don't think roasting is the best way to treat breast meat so that gets frozen and is usually used in stirfrys later in the week.

If I do roast the breasts, they inevitably get chopped up and added to something else. Chicken ceaser salad for example.

The hot schmaltz for the chicken goes in the salad dressing, no arguments. The flavour of the chicken adds a huge amount of body to the dressing and makes it taste amazing.


PS: I am a guy.

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i used to think the same way you guys did about the breat but if you do it right i find that the breast becomes just as moist and succulent as the dark meat. no joke.


bork bork bork

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i used to think the same way you guys did about the breat but if you do it right i find that the breast becomes just as moist and succulent as the dark meat. no joke.

I never understood the hate towards chicken breasts. IMO they have the best texture, and the most inoffensive flavor, of the whole bird. Now, thighs can be nice on occasion, as can drumsticks if one doesn't mind dealing with the odd bits of cartiledge, but the breats, yeah, that is the way to go.


He don't mix meat and dairy,

He don't eat humble pie,

So sing a miserere

And hang the bastard high!

- Richard Wilbur and John LaTouche from Candide

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for me i've always prefered the dark meat over the breast. it's falvor is more defined, it's more succulent, more fat so it's more moist and flavorful. but as i said when i roast a bird the breast comes out just as the dark meat. something that really bugs me is when the breast is clearly over cooked. it's dry and it's stringy and someone says they still prefer it over the dark meat. this drives me nuts becaue 99% of the time it's due to their dietary mindset of less fat. so they try to convince you that they prefer the breast in order to convince themselves that they prefer it. who you tring to kid?


bork bork bork

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Some people say that breasts have no flavor, but I definately find some flavor there. My favorite use of breasts, though, is in recipes that call for strips or chunks of chicken. In those cases the extra texture of the breast meat just makes it much more enjoyable. Thighs have too much a tendancy to become rubbery or soft in my experience.


He don't mix meat and dairy,

He don't eat humble pie,

So sing a miserere

And hang the bastard high!

- Richard Wilbur and John LaTouche from Candide

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i used to think the same way you guys did about the breat but if you do it right i find that the breast becomes just as moist and succulent as the dark meat. no joke.

I never understood the hate towards chicken breasts. IMO they have the best texture, and the most inoffensive flavor, of the whole bird. Now, thighs can be nice on occasion, as can drumsticks if one doesn't mind dealing with the odd bits of cartiledge, but the breats, yeah, that is the way to go.

Egad.

The most "inoffensive flavour of the whole bird."

Egad.

/kills self


"I've caught you Richardson, stuffing spit-backs in your vile maw. 'Let tomorrow's omelets go empty,' is that your fucking attitude?" -E. B. Farnum

"Behold, I teach you the ubermunch. The ubermunch is the meaning of the earth. Let your will say: the ubermunch shall be the meaning of the earth!" -Fritzy N.

"It's okay to like celery more than yogurt, but it's not okay to think that batter is yogurt."

Serving fine and fresh gratuitous comments since Oct 5 2001, 09:53 PM

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