Small Stuff Matters When Roasting Chickens

Details can make a big difference.

Small Stuff Matters When Roasting Chickens

Details can make a big difference.

Every chef and cookbook author has their take on how to make a perfect roast chicken.  Who knows who's right:  Baste it with butter?  No, rub it with olive oil.  High heat versus lower heat for a longer time.  Sear it first on top of the stove or stand it up vertically (can't do that because it makes me laugh).  Keep turning it from one side to another.   There's a million of 'em.

It can make you nutty.  And insecure.  But here are tips I know can make a difference:

 

Maybe you already do all that.  Here's a final step:  tie the legs together with a piece of butcher's twine. 

Tip:  It's essential that the twine is 100% cotton because any synthetics will melt in the oven's heat and who wants melted nylon on your food?

I'm clumsy when it comes to trussing a chicken.  I never do it right and even attempting it gets me annoyed.  So instead I just take an 8-inch length of string, hold the ends of the legs together and simply tie them together at the little knuckles, knotting and trimming the string.

This will keep the bird's cavity closed which will help it cook more evenly while also holding the juices inside instead of draining out.  And the bird will stay in position, keeping the legs from flapping around as you put it in the oven.  When done roasting, just snip the string off and carve the bird in your usual way.

Small things.  But you'll be amazed how much better your simple roast chicken will be.

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