It is finally oven weather!! I don’t know about you, but baking anything in the oven during the summer makes my entire apartment turn into an inferno. I avoid the oven temperatures by sticking to stove top and cold meals during those months. When it finally cools down I can bake, roast, and broil all day with no complaints. This is why a classic oven roasted chicken is perfect for the colder months.
When using the oven, I don’t even turn on our heating system. Our apartment’s oven is horrible at containing heat, so within a few minutes all the rooms are nice and toasty.
This Chicken is the Perfect Meal to Warm You Up During Fall and Winter
Like so many before me, my earliest childhood memories are with my family in the kitchen. When young, I stayed underfoot (though some would argue that I still tend to be) waiting to be handed a tidbit to taste here, be asked to help with a little task there, or just talking everyone’s ears off. It is through my parents that I learned how to be in the kitchen, and I can only hope to mimic the quality of food they continuously produce.
When my father is cooking, the results are a fabulous dinner and a HUGE mess to clean up. My father is a natural born cook. To him, the engineer, cooking is nothing more than a science experiment. If you put the right ratios of this and that into the mix, the end result will be nothing less than spectacular. The only setback is that when he walks out with his masterpiece in hand, he leaves a trail of scraps, supplies, and endless amounts of dirty dishes behind him.
My mother’s cooking is not a God given gift. Instead, she gained her talents through hard work and a dedication to learning the art of cooking and eating. Because it is learned, without intense concentration a mistake is bound to happen. If she is distracted an error often does occur. To help keep herself organized, my mother cannot start cooking until everything is completely clean, the ingredients are pre-measured in bowls, and everyone is quiet, so she can concentrate.
I would like to think I have the best qualities of both parents, the ingenuity of my father with the patiently pristine habits of my mother. However, each one tells me I’m more like the other every time I play their sous-chef.
Classic oven roasted chicken is my mother’s family comfort food. She refined the recipe over the years. Now, she has passed onto my sister and me. It is easy to cook and easy to clean up, taking no time to get into the oven. Adapted from Craig Claiborne’s roasted chicken, she made it her own. Whether you are cooking for yourself, your family, or friends, this recipe is a crowd pleaser, leaving the entire party satisfied and well fed. Just remember, the key to a browned and tender oven roasted chicken is the continuous turning you provide, allowing it to simmer in its own juices.
Here Hints to Getting Perfect Classic Oven Roasted Chicken:
- I believe roasted chicken cooked in a cast iron skillet is the best. Skillets are very heavy and retains heat within the metal. When you place food into the skillet, it will not cool off as much as other types of pans. This leads to food cooking at a uniformly hot temperature, leading to superior flavor. If you do not have a skillet, a roasting pan will suffice. I highly recommend getting one. I couldn’t live without mine!
- Some people say to flip the chicken, others say don’t bother. I am on the flipping side. To get that perfect crust, each side needs to have its surface exposed in the oven. Otherwise it sits in the juices and oils, unable to get nice and crispy. Flipping also keeps the bird juicy and prevents any meat drying out.
- Throw anything you want to roast with the chicken in and around the bird. I am partial to garlic and onions. Once in a while I will throw in potatoes, carrots, and/or squash. It is up to you. For this recipe. I am sticking to my typical onion and garlic combo.
- If you don’t have a thermometer, cut into the chicken breast. The fully cooked chicken’s liquid will run clear. It will not be bloody or murky. If not, it will need more time in the oven.
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