When you put it in the oven, you are already salivating, thinking of the beautiful golden and crispy chicken that will slowly roast, and give off mouth-watering smells. But to get this result every time, a few tips can guarantee an yummy result.
Chicken, the favourite meat of the Americans? No wonder when you know that it is affordable, healthy. It has lean meat, which does not make you fat. In addition, its breeding does not cause an ecological disaster, as, for example, for beef…
Among the multitude of chicken recipes, the star is still roasted chicken! A favourite of Sunday meals, it appeals to young and old alike, with its crispy, golden skin. To succeed every time, follow our tips and tricks.
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Tip 1 : Choose your chicken wisely
This may seem logical, but the choice of your chicken remains decisive for the success of this dish, which at first glance does not seem complicated.
Avoid industrial chickens, which are certainly less expensive but will have much less taste than organic, antibiotic-free, farm-raised chickens.
Focus on quality!
This is the first rule to follow. Go to a butcher who will advise you if you have any doubts. Remember: the tasty chicken you used to eat was a organic!
Tip 2 – Wipe the chicken
The chicken is naturally covered with a slight amount of moisture, especially if it has been in your fridge for a few days. Discard the returned water, and pat all the chicken dry, inside and out, with absorbent paper. This will allow it to be more crispy after cooking. Also, don’t rinse the chicken before cooking.
The USDA don’t recommend washing chicken, or any raw meat for that matter. Natural bacteria in raw meat and poultry juices can be spread to other surfaces, utensils, and even foods, leading to cross-contamination. So, the only way to safely kill bacteria in chicken is to cook it, not wash it.
Tip 3 – Don’t Cut it before cooking
« The advantage of chicken is that it is a large piece that is cooked evenly, » says the professional. So there is no need to cut it beforehand, quite the contrary. Cooking may be more aggressive and poultry may dry out, » he says. So we bet on a whole chicken that we cut out of the oven.
Tip 4 – Stuffing the chicken: it’s not complicated!
When you think of stuffed poultry, you imagine turkey and Christmas capon, garnished and then sewn in an almost artistic way by the great chefs… yet stuffing a poultry, and especially a chicken, is quite simple and almost indispensable. The stuffing provides moisture « from the inside » of the chicken, thus preventing the meat from drying out. It remains tender and tasty, and can take the flavours of the stuffing.
To stuff a chicken, first check that it has been emptied of its giblets. Then, prepare the stuffing in a bowl: it must contain « wet » ingredients as a priority: such as dairy products (small yogurt, cottage cheese), fats (butter, oil), chopped herbs, raw fruit pieces…
You do not need much to stuff your chicken! You can also add butcher’s stuffing: sausage meat, minced meat… but this is not mandatory!
Place the filling inside the chicken, filling it as much as possible, without packing. If you wish, you can close the chicken again. No need to carry a thread and a clamping needle: a few wooden picks (toothpicks) will do the trick to keep it in place during cooking!
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Tip 5 : Rub with coarse salt
To ensure that your chicken roasts properly and takes on a pretty honey colour, it is important to follow this little tip.
Rub it with coarse salt, the salt having the particularity of browning the skin. It is not for nothing that salt is used to bring cheeses to maturity. You can prepare it in a salt crust so that it can be browned slowly.
So season generously the skin, but also the inside of the chicken. One teaspoon per pound of meat is usually enough.
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Tip 6 – Marinate for a maximum of flavor!
Want to inject a good dose of flavour into your chicken? Prepare a flavoured marinade made with wine, beer or juice, then let the chicken macerate in the refrigerator for at least two hours in this marinade. Sage, basil, chervil, chervil, tarragon, coriander, oregano and thyme are among the herbs to choose for this favourite meat. As for spices, star anise, curry, nutmeg, paprika and ginger go perfectly with chicken.
Tip 7 – Control the cooking time
No to stunted chicken! All ovens are different, so be careful when following the recipe. The general cooking time of a roasted chicken is about 30 minutes per pound (1 pound = 500 grams). Be sure to baste the poultry thoroughly during cooking.
To know if the meat is well cooked, prick it and look at the colour of the juice that flows from it. If he’s clear, it’s okay! Remember to let the poultry rest under aluminum foil for 10 to 15 minutes before cutting it, so that the meat softens.
Tip 8 : Use Herbs
Even when you make a simple chicken without stuffing, consider adding herbs. Slide a lemon or orange inside (a trick taken from Jamie Oliver who has proven himself!), fresh herbs or garlic.
For an even more gourmet recipe, you can also slip a flavoured butter under the skin of the thighs and fillets. Make it yourself by mixing butter ointment with fresh herbs, citrus zest or even truffles. A good idea for the upcoming holidays!
Tip 9 : Use an Infusion with Organic Verbena Leaves.
Yes an Infusion, like Granny’s Herbal Tea. Once infused, remove the leaves and use this Infusion to water the chicken during cooking, every time you turn it over. This gives a delicate flavour, to be guessed by the guests and the Chicken is not dry, without being bathed in fat. Also perfect with guinea fowl.
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Tip 10 – Don’t Serve it immediately when it comes out of the oven
If the smell of cooked chicken smells in the kitchen when it comes out of the oven and our greedy instinct to rush on it, we should actually abstain. « It is better to wait a little while before going on to taste, » Maxime Bellenguez advises. Until the poultry meat relaxes and the chicken makes its last juices. » To eat hot, you can cover it with aluminum foil. Tips to practice at the next Sunday meal.
Tip 11 – Do not discard your carcass
Put it in a saucepan with 500 ml of water, let simmer for 1 hour over low heat. You will get a good concentrated poultry broth, to be placed when it is cooled in an ice cube compartment in the freezer. Then keep it in a freezer bag, very practical for your next dish!
Tip 12 – Marinate with baking soda
If, by any chance, you have chosen your chicken the wrong way and when you prepare it, you realize that it is the carne, think of baking soda.
Indeed, the latter has many virtues in cooking, in particular that of softening the meat and making it softer before cooking.
Prepare a bicarbonate-based marinade (2 tablespoons) in 50 cl of water and immerse your chicken in it. Leave to set for 2 hours in the fridge, and rinse to obtain a meat that is much easier to work with.
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