Chef John des Rosiers prefers to marinate his chickens for two days to allow the flavors of the herbs to infuse the chicken. We found that even a four-hour soak yields satisfying results. Roasting the chicken at a high temperature seals in juices and keeps the meat tender. Use sturdy kitchen shears to easily cut the chickens in half.
2 (3-pound) roasting chickens
1/4 cup chopped fresh rosemary
1/4 cup chopped fresh thyme
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1 1/2 tablespoons extravirgin olive oil
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 garlic cloves, minced
How to Make It
Remove and discard giblets and necks from chickens. Rinse chickens with cold water; pat dry. Trim excess fat. Place chickens on a cutting surface. Split chickens in half lengthwise. Starting at neck cavity, loosen skin from breasts and drumsticks by inserting fingers, gently pushing between skin and meat.
Combine rosemary and remaining ingredients except cooking spray. Rub mixture under loosened skin and over breasts and drumsticks. Place chicken halves in large zip-top plastic bags; seal and marinate in refrigerator 4 hours or up to 2 days.
Preheat oven to 500°.
Remove chicken halves from bags. Place chicken halves, skin sides up, on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 500° for 30 minutes or until a thermometer inserted into meaty part of thigh registers 175°. Remove chicken halves from pan; cover and let stand 15 minutes. Discard skin.
Made this last night and my kitchen is still recovering from the smoke-filled oven. I didn't cut the chicken in half but simply butterflied it, otherwise I made the recipe exactly as written, marinated it first for 2 days. A 500-degree oven for 30 min. made a huge mess, and I really didn't care for what it did to the bird. For one thing, the breast meat was too dry . . . and the texture of all of it was just not the same as a chicken roasted at a more "normal" temperature. I'm surprised that other reviewers didn't have the same experience.
Awesome Recipe and very simple! I would highly recommend getting the herbes de provence because it is a very versatile seasoning that you can use over and over again (Great on Roasted Potatoes). I baked a 5 lb chicken for about 2 hrs at 350, it came out golden and delicious! I also roasted some turnips, parsnips and carrots on another rack, simultaneously. Definitely making this again!
This chicken was fantastic! I only marinated it for 24 hours and instead of the fresh herb mixture, I used a handful of dried Herbs de Provence with the garlic, pepper, salt, and oil. I was surprised with how fast it cooked... only 35 min and it was tender and juicy. Definitely the best chicken I've ever roasted. I think this is a staple in our house. I liked cutting the chicken in half because my husband and I cooked one half last night and are planning to cook the other half tonight. Perfect for two people.
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