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Author Notes: Method loosely adapted from Alice Water's The Art o Simple Food. I would urge anyone buying a whole chicken (or any meat for that matter) to seek it out with care by purchasing one that was raised naturally. It will make all the difference in the flavor! It feels easier for me to spend a few extra dollars here knowing that I will get plenty of leftovers and a couple quarts of stock out of the deal. —Holly Stephenson | Feast or Fallow
Serves a crowd of 5-6
- 1 pasture raised chicken, 4-5 lbs
- 1 orange
- 4-5 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 4-5 garlic cloves
- olive oil
- salt + pepper
- baker's twine
- 24-48 hours before roasting, season the chicken by rubbing salt and pepper all over the inside and outside. Cover loosely with aluminum foil and refrigerate. (While this step isn't 100% necessary, it will help the chicken stay moist and flavorful while roasting. It's worth the extra planning.)
- One hour before beginning the roast, take the chicken out of the fridge to bring to room temperature.
- Make a gremolata of sorts by coarsely chopping the rosemary and garlic. I quite like having rustic pieces of garlic and herb in my chicken so I leave them larger than I would for other recipes. Zest one orange and add it to small bowl with rosemary and garlic. Cover the mixture with olive oil and allow those flavors mingle as the chicken warms up.
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Working with your already gutted chicken, gently separate the skin from the breast. Rub 1/2 of the gremolata between the skin and breast, working as far down the bird as possible. Rub the remainder of the gremolata all over the outside.
- Slice the zested orange in half, and stuff it inside the cavity. Tie the chicken legs together with baker's twine and tuck the wings underneath themselves to prevent the tips from burning while roasting.
- Starting with the breast side up, send the chicken to the oven, and roast for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and flip the bird to roast bread side down for 20 minutes. Last time, remove from oven and roast 20 more minutes, breast side up. Let rest for an additional 20 minutes. That's 20 mins up, 20 mins down, 20 mins up, 20 mins rest. Dig in!