I had originally intended this post to be a restaurant review. I’m way behind on those. But, I kind of had a “Think Like A Chef” breakthrough.
Last week, I was going to braise short ribs, but didn’t have the right ingredients, so instead, Cathy said, “Well, get a turkey breast and I’ll cook that.” When I got to the store, the only turkey breasts they had were frozen. That’s when the following conversation between me and myself took place:
“Well, I guess I’ll just buy a cooked chicken later tonight.”
“Wait a minute…what are you doing all these Think Like A Chef blogs for, if you aren’t going to use what you learn? Cook something.”
“You don’t have a recipe. Buy a cooked chicken.”
“What have I learned so far? Mostly roasting. I’ll roast a chicken. I don’t need a recipe.”
“No recipe? C’mon Mike….I mean….you can’t cook without a recipe. Cook without a recipe?? You may as well ask Hubert Keller to hire you as his sous chef.”
“Now wait a minute. I can’t actually ask Hubert Keller to be his sous chef…at best he’d make me a dishwasher, and I’m way too old to start a new career as a dishwasher, and anyway, I’m sure the pay isn’t very good. But…I can actually roast a chicken without a recipe…so I’m gonna do that.”
And here are the results:
I bought a five pound chicken. First step…into the cavity went thyme and rosemary. That was the way Colicchio did it in the book, and the way I did it last time. But I also decided to add half of a small onion, a couple of baby carrots and a small piece of celery as well. My thought process here was that, many times I see people roast chickens on top of a mirepoix, so I thought, why not get some aromatics from them?
Next, trussing the chicken. Not perfect…but better!
Next, dry the skin like crazy! I think I went through ½ roll of paper towels drying the skin.
Then came the seasoning. This time, I got under the skin and seasoned it with salt and pepper. Also did the top of the bird. Next, I browned the sides for seven minutes each, and then it went into a 375 degree oven for twenty minutes, before adding the butter/olive oil product, and basted occasionally. Total cooking time in the oven was 75 minutes as this was a five pound bird.
|Uhhh....I guess you can tell where we tried the skin...it was crispy!!|
After I took it out, I steamed some broccoli, but left it ever so slightly crunchy. Just to give it some mouth feel.
Then I plated the breast, leg, and broccoli and finished it with sea salt.
The skin was crispy. (Cathy and I treated ourselves to a small piece.) The chicken was incredibly juicy and full of flavor. The broccoli was also a very good compliment to the chicken.
Now…onto those short ribs…