It’s been difficult to keep eating healthy this holiday season. I’ve now made a habit of cooking at home, but I’ve been eating more sweets than usual at holiday outings and at home. I’ll finally get back to the salad menu this weekend, now that I can restock for the menu. Hopefully those dishes will rejuvenate the full-on healthy vibes.
In the meantime, as I said, I have been trying to cook at home. And one of my new favorite things to do is soak a chicken in one of the many marinades on this blog, then spatchcock the bird. Removing the backbone and roasting it flat allows for quick and even cooking. (How to spatchcock a chicken.)
I’m going with organic chicken from Sprouts; each one is $10-$12. If you’re closer to Anaheim, I’d recommend OC Poultry & Rotisseree. The chicken has the head and the feet on it–and for some reason, everyone I tell this to freaks out over it–but sack up, cut off the strange bits and move on with it all. OCP&R has organic chicken for like $2 a pound and it’s local.
I cook it using Thomas Keller’s method in Bouchon: 25 min. on 475, then (approx.) 30 min. on 400. You get crunchy skin and moist skin. (Side note: Check the chicken between 25 and 30 minutes. The smaller the chicken, the more the higher heat cooks through before the bird roasts on the lower heat).
What I like about using whole chicken is that you have the opportunity to do so many things: Legs and thighs with rice and roasted veggies; cubed breast in salad, pasta, pretty much anything; sliced breast in sandwiches and paninis; and of course, you can make a stock with the bones and some vegetables, add back some of that chicken and whatever else you’d like, and have a pretty awesome soup.
I recently used the chermoula marinade from our Moroccan menu and served it family style on a bed of the stewed garbanzo side. There’s so much to do with a roast chicken, and I think I’ve only just begun.