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Whole Roasted Chicken


Submitted by Layla Zirkind   To me, food doesn’t have to be fancy or over the top to impress, it just needs to taste great. We need to go back to the basics and perfect those dishes before we can brave the Michelin recipes. This is my reason for submitting a classic roast chicken recipe. It is the simple basics that really are the holy grail of any cuisine. Brining is an easy way to cook moist, tender and juicy chicken every time! Brining works by loosening the protein structure of the chicken which allows extra water and favors to be trapped by the protein during the brining process so that the moisture is retained. Try this recipe and you’ll never look back!


1. Wash chicken thoroughly and submerge it in the water solution. If the chicken is not fully covered, simply add more cold water until it is completely submerged. Cover and refrigerate overnight or up to 48 hours.
2. When you are ready to cook, preheat oven to 450°F.
3. Cut a large piece of foil and cover it with sheets of paper towel. Remove chicken from brine and discard the water solution. Using lots of paper towels, dry the chicken very, very well. Dry the inside of the cavity and the outside as best as you can. The reason for this is that when the surface of the chicken is moist before cooking, it will release steam, which prevents the formation of a nice crust.
4. Combine salt and pepper. Sprinkle the mixture all over the chicken, inside the cavity as well. You do not have to use the entire mixture, just enough to cover the whole chicken nicely. Note that kosher chickens often come with the legs trussed together. You can leave it this way or discard and truss the chicken the way you prefer. But trust me about trussing—it helps the chicken cook evenly without drying out the extremities.
5. Let chicken rest for 10 minutes, then serve.
6. Place the chicken breast side up in a 9- x 13-inch pan or roasting pan. Roast for 1 hour, basting after 30 and/or 45 minutes. The chicken should reach 165°F on a meat thermometer, though it may need a few extra minutes depending on the size.
7. Prepare the brine: In a large bowl, combine sugar and salt. Add water and mix rapidly with a fork until ingredients dissolve. Add 3-4 cups cold water and set aside.