To bake a really tasty, juicy and appetizing chicken in the oven you need to both choose the right bird, observe the cooking temperature and time, and pick correctly the accompanying ingredients.
At first glance, there is absolutely nothing complicated in cooking a chicken or any other bird in an oven. But this is only at first glance. Despite the seeming simplicity of the preparation, this dish requires cooking skills, knowledge of certain secrets as well as use of your imagination.
- It is important to carefully approach the selection of poultry carcasses. Try to buy chilled or fresh-killed chicken, which differs from the frozen poultry with much more rich flavor and tender meat. Chicken Carcasses of chickens younger than one year and with maximum weight of 1.5 kilograms are best suited to be baked in the oven. Pay attention to the freshness of the poultry. Fresh chicken should have a well-developed muscle tissue and rounded breast without protruding bones. The color of the skin should be smooth, pale yellow with a pink tinge, meat and poultry fat should be equal color without spots. If the skin color is streaked with gray and the muscle fibers are uneven, not pale pink shade, and the fat is too yellow, it’s better to not purchase such poultry. You won’t be able to make a tasty dish with it. Do not forget to sniff the chicken before buying. A good fresh bird has a pleasant sweet smell.
- Choosing dishes for baking, try to find a cast-iron or a ceramic form. Such cookware heats slowly and evenly, which will exclude the possibility of burning or uneven roasting of the poultry. However, metal and glass baking dishes will also work fine, but will require more careful attention to the temperature regime as they have a tendency to overcooking. For those who want to easily bake a whole chicken, we would advise to look in specific stores special deep forms with a high cone in the center or separate metal stands for grilling a chicken in a vertical position.
- During roasting you should monitor the temperature regime as well. A chicken is considered fully cooked when the internal temperature of the meat exceeded 85°C. But this can only be traced using a special thermometer. To determine the degree of readiness without special gadgets follow the simple guidelines. Preheat the oven before you put the prepared chicken in. The baking time is about 40 minutes per kilogram of carcass weight at a temperature between 180°C and 200°C. You can check the chicken readiness with a toothpick piercing it in the breast area. If the appearing juice is absolutely transparent and clean, without any mixture of blood and excessive turbidity, then the chicken is ready. But do not keep the chicken too long in the oven, otherwise its meat will be too dry and will acquire an unpleasant odor of remelted fat.
- Getting a really delicious browned crust on the chicken is not difficult. If your oven is equipped with a grill, then just use it 10 – 15 minutes before the end of cooking. For those who do not have a grill in the oven, it may be advisable to cover the chicken with a small amount of melted honey, or a thin layer of sour cream. But it is better to avoid using a mayo bought in a hypermarket. Mayonnaise will give the chicken a not too pleasant smell of vinegar and will soak it through with too much fat that would adversely affect both the taste of the finished dishes, as well as its dietary qualities.
- The easiest way to quickly and deliciously bake a chicken in the oven is to bake it on a thick layer of coarse salt. Pre-heat the oven. Wash the bird carcass, cut the breast in the center and open like a book. Rub the chicken with grated black pepper. Pour one kg of coarse salt on a pan and put the chicken on it with its back down. Bake until done. Do not worry, the chicken will not turn over-salted. It will absorb as much salt as needed for good taste, while even baking and a crispy golden-brown crust are guaranteed t you without any hassle. Besides, you will always know how to quickly and easily cook a chicken in the oven.
- A chicken would turn juicy, tender and flavorful if baked with lemon and garlic. Thoroughly wash the chicken carcass and dry it using a paper towel or a napkin. Cut one large lemon into thin slices, 6 cloves of garlic cut in petals. Rub the chicken with salt and black pepper, stuff with half of the lemon slices, add 1 – 2 sprigs of thyme or ½ tsp dried thyme leaves. Put the remaining lemon and garlic slices on top of the chicken, wrap with the parchment paper and place in a baking sleeve. Bake until done at 180°С for 1 – 1.5 hours.
- The chicken turns very tasty if cooked according to a simple Turkish recipe. Wash the chicken, dry, rub with salt and black pepper and place one small sour apple into the carcass. In a separate bowl, mix 2 tbsp. of mustard, 2 tbsp. spoons of lemon juice, two crushed cloves of garlic and 1 teaspoon of sugar. Smear the sauce of the chicken and place it in a baking dish. Cut 5 potatoes, 3 carrots and 5 large onions into middle-sized cubes. Mince 50 gr Of parsley and thyme greens. Mix vegetables and herbs and spread around the chicken. Bake in the oven at 200°C. The first 30 minutes the chicken is baked with vegetables, covered with a lid. Then remove the lid and bake until done.
- You would get very juicy and tender chicken with delicious crispy crust if it is baked sprinkled with bread crumbs. Wash the chicken, dry it and cut into four pieces. Mix one glass of bread crumbs with 1 tbsp. of chopped fresh or dried garlic. In a separate bowl whisk two eggs with a fork. Rub the chicken pieces with salt and pepper, dip in whisked eggs and mix thoroughly cover in bread crumbs with garlic. In a wide frying pan warm-up 3 tbsp. spoon of vegetable oil on strong fire and quickly fry the breaded pieces of chicken on both sides until they are golden brown. Cover the baking dish with oil and put the fried chicken in it. Place 50 g. of butter on each piece of chicken. Bake the prepared chicken in the oven for 40 minutes at 200°C. Serve with a fresh vegetables salad.
- Chicken stuffed with Brussels sprouts would decorate any holiday table, while the perfect combination of good juicy roasted chicken with rich aroma of delicate stuffing would pleasantly surprise you. Heat 3 tbsp. of butter in the frying pan. Add 2 fine slices of bacon and fry for 2 minutes, then add 1 chopped onion and 2 minced garlic cloves. Fry for another 2 minutes. Add 200 g of well washed and dried Brussels sprouts, salt and black pepper to taste, mix well, cover and stew on medium heat for 10 minutes until soft. Coll the cooked cabbage slightly and grind in a blender to a state of a large sized minced meat. Wash the chicken carcass, dry, rub with salt and black pepper, stuff with minced cabbage, put in a baking dish and place in oven preheated to 180°C. Bake for 40 – 60 minutes until done. Serve the portioned slices with a side dish of stuffing, and sprinkle with lemon juice.
- And at the end we would like to offer a completely extravagant North American recipe of a chicken cooked on the beer can. Chicken cooked in such a way, turns very juicy, flavorful and savory. Wash and thoroughly dry the chicken. In a separate bowl, mix 2 tbsp. of paprika, 2 tbsp. of brown sugar, 1 tbsp. of salt, 1 teaspoon of cayenne pepper, 1 teaspoon of black pepper, 1 teaspoon of garlic powder, 1 teaspoon of dry celery and 1 teaspoon of dried mustard.
Rub the chicken with the resulting mixture inside and outside. Warm one metal can of weak beer to room temperature and make several holes in the lid using an opener. Pour out part of the beer, leaving little more than a half in the can. Carefully stick the chicken bottom part on the beer can and place on a baking pan in the oven, preheated to 200°C. Bake for 1.5 hours at 180°С until done. Take the cooked chicken off the can, put on a platter and let it rest for 10 minutes. Immediately serve with a fresh vegetables salad and a spicy sauce.