With just a few minutes' prep, anyone can make our easy roast chicken
1 whole chicken, total weight 3 1/2 lb
pinch (generous) salt
pinch (generous) black pepper
1 tbsp butter
Preheat oven to 375°F. Lightly grease a small roasting pan or heavy, shallow casserole dish that's just large enough to hold the chicken. Remove bag of giblets if there is one; discard or add to Easy Chicken Stock. Check the cavity (at neck and between legs) for excess skin; trim and discard.
Season cavity with salt and pepper. Smear butter on outside of chicken. Then sprinkle with salt (go easy if you've used salted butter) and pepper. Tie legs together with butcher's twine if you want, but it's not necessary.
Place chicken in roasting pan. Roast in centre of oven for 1¼-1½ hours, basting occasionally during the last 30 minutes. (If you like, pop a pan of sliced zucchini and sweet peppers, tossed with olive oil, in oven during the last 45 minutes.)
To check for doneness, pierce a thigh of the chicken; it's cooked when juices run clear and a thermometer inserted near the thigh reads 180°F. It's best to let the roast chicken stand 10 minutes before carving. Serve with veggies and mashed potatoes.
Seasoning variations: Sprinkle skin with dried basil and oregano leaves or smoked paprika. Stuff cavity with quartered lemon or orange, sprigs of fresh herbs or minced garlic, or a combo of each.
Calories 333, Protein 32g, Carbohydrates 0g, Fat 22g, Fibre 22g.
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