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Slow Roasted Chicken

Nothing is quite as wholesome and delicious as a simple roasted chicken. No matter the season, a whole roasted chicken makes for a perfect dinner.

Julian's Slow-Roasted Chicken
As this slow-roasting technique does take a little time, it's best on a weekend. I typically make it as Sunday dinner. All in all, it takes about 2 to 2 1/2 hours to prepare from start to finish, so do allow yourself enough time.

Juicy and flavorful with a crisp skin. 
My recipe uses a compound butter under the skin. If you follow this blog you realize I do this with pretty much every roasted bird from the small poussin to the medium Guinea fowl, to the largest Thanksgiving turkey. This compound butter not only helps keep the meat moist it imparts a lovely flavor and I encourage you to adopt it for all roasted birds. I typically use chopped fresh or frozen rosemary as the herb, but you could substitute for other favorite herb flavors. I would try to avoid dried herbs as they simply don't have enough flavor to make an impact.

With compound butter under the skin,
 before basting with more butter.
If you want to roast the chicken with vegetables around it, see my other recipe for details.

Ingredients

1 3-4 pound chicken
4 tablespoons butter, room temperature
1 tablespoon rosemary leaves, chopped
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
salt and pepper
a few rosemary stems for the cavity

Instructions

Remove chicken from refrigerator and packaging and pat dry. (Rinse first if you prefer.) Place on a cutting board.

Combine 3 tablespoons of room temperature butter with the chopped rosemary leaves, Dijon mustard and a pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper. Set aside

Run your fingers under the skin of the chicken breast and legs to create a pocket between the skin and the meat. Use the back of a spoon if you need to so you can reach as much of the breast meat as possible. Take care to not tear the skin. Place the chicken, breast side up, on oiled V-rack set in shallow roasting pan or baking dish.

Spread the compound butter under the skin of the breast and legs. Insert the stems of rosemary into the cavity. Loosely tie the legs together but there is no need to fully truss the bird. If you do not have butchers twine to tie the legs, you can skip this step. Tying them together simply improves presentation.

Preheat the oven to 375F degrees with the rack on the lower-middle position. If you have a convention oven, set it to convect roast.

Melt the remaining 1 tablespoon butter. Brush chicken with butter and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

When the oven is pre-heated, roast the chicken for 30 minutes, then reduce oven temperature to 200F degrees. Roast 1 hour more.

Increase temperature to 400F degrees and roast until instant-read thermometer inserted in thigh registers 170 to 175 degrees, about 15 minutes longer.

Transfer chicken to cutting board; let rest 20 minutes. Carve and serve.

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