Roasted Chicken with Rosemary and Oranges

Remember the other day when I said that I was tired of spending $3 on a loaf of bread?  Well I decided that I’m also tired of paying $7/lb. for lunch meat.  So there.  What do you think of that, deli section of the grocery store?

The alternative, of course, is to produce my own lunch meat.  Does this mean I’m going to get baby turkeys, raise them, slaughter them, and eat them?  Hell no.  I could never do that.  Just thinking about it makes me kinda weepy….innocent little birds, just clucking around, basking in the sunshine, pecking at crap on the ground…..then WHACK!  They get their heads chopped off.  I get chills just thinking about it. 

However, I’m completely fine with buying already dead birds, roasting them, and freezing the meat for use in lunches and other meals.  That I can do.  Animal lovers, please do not hate me.  So yesterday, I gave it a shot.  This is my first roasted chicken, so be easy on me.

Here’s what you need:

Go ahead and pretend there’s an orange in there, cause you need that too.  Oh, and some salt.  And some thyme.  And ignore the balsamic vinegar and brown sugar.  Sorry, sometimes I decide to add and delete stuff at the last minute.  Here are the exact ingredients/measurements:

1 4-5lb. whole chicken
1 tbsp. fresh chopped rosemary or 1 tsp. dried
1 garlic clove, chopped
1 tbsp. olive oil
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
3 or 4 sprigs fresh rosemary
1 orange, halved, with one of the halves sliced

The first thing you need to do is turn your oven on to 350 degrees and get your garlic and rosemary chopped and your orange sliced.  Then, take the chicken out of the packaging, remove the giblets if they’re in the cavity, and rinse it really good with cold water.  Personally, this grosses me out.  I don’t like handling raw meat, and removing innards from a body cavity is just nasty.  But it must be done.  Also, if you can afford to buy organic chicken, you probably should.  I, however, cannot.

Unfortunately, it appears that I have no photos of me rinsing the chicken.  I do have a video however, but y’all really don’t need to see me handling poultry while wearing leggings, ankle socks with dogs on them, and slippers.  It just ain’t fittin’.  Just make sure you rinse the chicken, inside and out, really well.   Then pat it dry, like this:

Please notice that I am using a clean washcloth to do this, instead of paper towels.  I stopped buying paper towels about a year ago because they’re terrible for the environment and I felt like they were something I could live without.  But if that’s what you wanna use to dry your chicken, go for it.  I won’t hold it against you.

Once your chicken is dry, take a picture of it with your camera cause it’s weird looking.

Just kidding. You don’t have to do that.  It is weird and sort of pathetic looking though, isn’t it?  And seriously, raw meat grosses me out.  Did I mention that?

What you really need to do, though, is start rubbing the chicken down.  Yeah, that’s right, rub it down.  Rub it down with the juice of the orange half, olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic, thyme, and the chopped rosemary. 

Be sure and rub some of this herbal goodness under the skin too, and don’t be afraid to get up under there, like this:

Once the chicken is good and coated with the oil, salt, pepper, garlic, thyme, and rosemary, it’s time to truss it.  Now, I have never trussed a chicken before, and I didn’t have any kitchen twine so I had to use some skinny rope-type stuff that I found.  Don’t worry, it was clean.  However, I strongly recommend a) getting some kitchen twine, b) watching a video online on how to truss a chicken, like this one http://ruhlman.com/2010/07/how-to-truss-a-chicken.html, and c) planning on doing it a couple of times.  Or maybe that’s just me, I don’t know.

Once your chicken is all tied up nice and pretty, put it in a roasting pan and strategically arrange the remaining oranges and the rosemary sprigs.  You can do it like this:

Or you can do it however you want.  Be creative.  Or not.  I don’t care.  Just make sure you put on some oranges and rosemary to give your chicken a nice flavor.  Oh! I almost forgot.  Remember that orange half that you squeezed the juice out of a minute ago?  Go ahead and shove that baby, along with some more rosemary sprigs, into the cavity of the chicken.  Fyi, I was going to word that totally differently, but I thought I might offend someone.

Now cover it all up with foil, and bake it for about 20 to 30 minutes.

Please ignore my dirty oven.  It said it was self-cleaning, but it doesn’t seem to be cleaning itself.  How annoying.

After 20 to 30 minutes, remove the foil and baste the chicken with pan juices.  If you don’t have pan juices, like I didn’t, you need to create your own with some chicken broth or water.  Then throw the bird back in the oven for another 1 to 2 hours, basting every 10 to 15 minutes or so.

Basically, the cook time will depend on the weight of your chicken.  My chicken was about 5 lbs. so I cooked it a little longer, probably closer to 2 hours.  If you’re unsure about the time, like I was, insert a meat thermometer deep into the thigh joint.  When it reads 165 degrees, the chicken is done.

Mine’s a little higher, about 170, but that’s okay with me.  Chicken needs to be fully cooked anyway, so let’s just say I was making extra double sure that no one in my house would be getting sick.

Here’s the finished product:

Mmm….you guys, this chicken was so good.  It was nice and moist and the subtle flavors of the rosemary, thyme, and orange complemented each other perfectly.  We had it for dinner last night, my kids are eating it in their sandwiches at lunch today, and we still have tons of leftovers.  Did I mention this chicken only cost like $4.78 or something?  I really don’t know what I’m more excited about, the delicious chicken or the huge savings on lunch meat.

Okay, yeah, the chicken wins.

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1 comment so far

  1. AudraRocks on

    Hey! I love you very much, so I must tell you….TYSON chicken is not even close to natural E V E R! In fact TYSON is the devil! http://www.naturalnews.com/024756.html
    http://www.organicconsumers.org/articles/article_6369.cfm

    Dont buy it, Literally or figuratively!
    I found this Co-op in KC, check with them on where to get local chickens, not only will you be helping your family, but also another Kansas City Family. :)
    http://www.facebook.com/kcorganiccoop

    ps. I am so glad I got to see a lime green banana hammock bounce this weekend with you! xoxoxoxoxx!


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