Recipe: Roasted Whole Chicken
We often get asked about how to cook our products and so I thought I would share how I cook a whole chicken. Whole chickens are one of the best values for feeding your family. One of our 4-5 pound birds will easily feed our family of 5 for 2-3 meals. It is also one of the easiest and most forgiving meats to prepare!
I like simplicity and don't think you need to "massage" your bird, who wants to rub their hands all over raw meat? Not me, thank you. I also do not "wash" my chicken, however, I always wash and clean any surface the chicken touches, simply as a precaution.
I thaw the chicken for 2-3 days in the refrigerator. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees, cut open the bag, and put the bird in a 9x13 casserole dish.
My "go to" seasonings are olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic and thyme. You can use rosemary instead of thyme, and sometimes I change up my seasonings but salt, pepper and garlic are my staple spices for all of our meats. You will find the flavor of the birds is wonderful so you don't have to mask or add a lot of seasoning.
I simply drizzle olive oil on the bird and then sprinkle the seasonings on. Then I turn the bird over and repeat with olive oil and seasonings. I always roast the bird with the breasts down, to keep them even juicier. Place in the oven for about 1 1/2 hours at 375 degrees. I don't cover with foil because my family loves the crispy skin.
The chicken is done when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees, you will need a meat thermometer to check it. Tip: when removing the thermometer, you will see clear juices running out when the chicken is done.
This method provides a beautiful browned bird with crispy skin. We usually serve the whole roasted chicken for the first meal. I use the remaining meat, which I pull off the bones, for a second meal. We make chicken salad, chicken tacos, sandwiches, chili or soup with the leftovers.
I then put the bones in the crockpot and cover them with water. Sometimes I add veggies and spices, if I have them. I cook the bones on low about 24 hours and it makes a delicious broth or stock that I use as needed.
The value of our whole birds is amazing because you can use it for such a variety of recipes and meals. And with a bit of planning, it is a delicious and simple meal that is super healthy for you and your family.
I have cooked a semi-frozen whole chicken in the crockpot and it turned out well, the skin does not crisp up like in the oven but if you need a fix-it and forget it meal, it still tastes delicious. I would love to hear your tips on preparing and cooking a whole bird.
We hope to see you at the Bentonville Market on the Square in front of the 5-10 or at the Downtown Rogers Market off Cherry Street this Saturday!