I have started OPERATION: DEEP FREEZE at 0700 hours this morning. A drastic realization collided into my thoughts as I gazed at my calendar.
I have 10 large chickens ordered and they should be here near the end of June. That's a lot of chicken!
I couldn't pass up local farm raised chickens, so I ordered enough to last a few months. I didn't consider the logical fact that my deep freeze is crammed full. So today we embark on the task of cleaning out the deep freeze- I passed on the camouflage make-up, but I rolled up my sleeves and dug to the bottom of our deep freeze. If I make one item from the freezer a day, I should make enough room to keep my hens on ice.
My maneuver unearthed a forgotten chicken.
Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner!
On the menu today is roasted chicken. I might whip up some potatoes, harvest some lettuce from the garden, and thaw the last bag of frozen sweet corn. That's not a shabby dinner and I am making a bit of headway on our goal.
I plan on roasting my chicken, "beer butt style". This chick will be virgin, because I don't have beer in the house and I am not going to hit the bar or gas station at 7:15 in the morning. I have used beer in the past, but lately I am sticking with my reliable homespun method.
I improvise by using an old glass mason jar.
Here's what I do:
First, I brine my chicken in a salt water bath for several hours. I love brining poultry- it enhances the flavor and moisture. While my girl is soaking, I lower the shelves in my oven. I need enough space for the chicken to stand in the oven.
I violate the hen and gently stretch the large cavity. I slide the chicken on top of the jar and make sure she is able to stand upright on the jar.
Next, I slightly loosen the skin away from the meat. I push sage, basil, onions, and garlic inside the skin so it sits directly on the meat.
I generously rub salt, pepper, and paprika on the outside skin.
Voila! Our girl is ready for a few hours in a 375 degree oven. I suppose I should have cleaned my oven for her visit, but I am not the hostess with the mostess...
I usually let the chicken roast for 1 1/2 hours or more and then I pull her carefully off the jar. I let her rest for a few minutes before I attempt this. It may take a little work, but she should slide off eventually.
Do you have any tips for roasting chicken?