Roast chicken dinners are always a firm favorite! Our head chef Jeff Thomas has a simple step-by-step guide on how to cook the perfect roast chicken giving roast dinners something to be excited about once again!
We highly recommend that you buy the best chicken that you can afford (after all, it is the star of the show)…. We suggest Packington Free Range.
First and foremost, pre- heat your oven to 200 degrees celcuis- this will ensure a crispy skin- a must for any roast chicken!
Jeff’s top tip: Add a couple of sprigs of fresh thyme, a whole lemon (cut in half) and a large knob of butter to the cavity. Mix some fresh thyme into butter and spread over the skin that covers the breast of the bird, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Jeff highly recommends cooking your bird on a trivet of vegetables (leeks, carrots and onions) or a wire rack so that the bird does not poach in its own juices- the juices form the chicken will drip down into the trivet and can be used within the gravy along with the vegetables .
Place the chicken in the pre heated oven for around fifteen minutes, and after this time turn the oven down to 150 degrees Celsius and cook for the remaining amount of time, depending on the size of the bird.
On average, a chicken should take around 1-1 hour 15 minutes to cook; however, this varies due to the size of the bird and heat strength of your oven.
To ensure that your chicken is cooked thoroughly, put an oven thermometer into the thickest part of the bird (the thigh) and when this reaches 75 degrees celcuis, then it is cooked through. If you don’t have a thermometer, check that in-between the thigh and the breast is blood free and the juices are running clear.
Once removed from the oven, cover with tin foil and leave to rest for around 10 minutes or until ready to serve.The resting period is extremely important to enable the chicken to relax and secure all of the juices making your chicken moist!
If you use a trivet, the chicken juices and vegetables can be pushed through a sieve to extract all of the rich juices for the perfect accompaniment to your beautifully cooked chicken!
We hope that you find this step by step guide useful and that it allows you to master the art of cooking the perfect roast chicken!
If you have any handy hints and tips that you use when cooking your roast chicken please share them with us.