Why, oh why, does anyone ever remove the skin from a chicken?
Ah, ok, calories, fat. Â But there is a time and a place for boneless, skinless chicken breasts (which I find, frankly, completely unappealing) and there is a time for perfect, crispy, golden roasted chicken.
When we made roast chicken in a cooking class I took a few years ago, we did it using a traditional french technique — compound butter, and a lot of it, stuffed inside the chicken’s skin, to melt and tenderize the meat. Â But when I am cooking at home, butter is for baking, and that’s that. Â For just about anything involving cooking, I use olive oil.
But butter is solid at room temperature, and obviously olive oil is not — and therefore, inherently, much harder to stuff into pockets of chicken skin. Â But with a little garlic powder and salt, I think I managed to get more than enough of it in — the meat was seasoned, moist and had tons of flavor, no butter necessary. Â And the best part, of course, the crispy, browned skin, was even better.
And this is a simple, easy, no-fuss recipe. Â No rotating the chicken every ten minutes, no basting. Â Just put it in, turn on the oven, and broil a bit at the end if its skin isn’t golden enough for you. Â Perfect for a summer dinner party, no planning ahead necessary.
Â Perfect Roast Chicken
1/2 roast chicken (or use a whole chicken and double the recipe)
1/2 cup olive oil (use good quality, but not extra virgin)
1 tbsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 tbsp garlic powder
Preheat your oven to 450 degrees. Mix together the olive oil and spices until evenly combined. Gently rub the olive oil mixture beneath the skin of the chicken, pulling the skin away very carefully, with your fingers, so you don’t break it. For any places where the skin won’t pull away easily, rub the olive oil mixture on the outside of the bird. Rub any remaining olive oil all over the outside of the chicken’s skin.
Roast at 450 degrees for 50 minutes to 1 hour, until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat reads 165 degrees. Broil for 1-2 minutes if the chicken isn’t sufficiently browned but the temperature has reached 165. Allow to rest for 10 minutes, and serve.