Awhile ago, I organized my freezer to find that I had about 5 half chickens in my freezer. You’re probably saying, how is it that you accumulated so many? Well, my lovely Winter CSA basically gave me a half-chicken every month. Since I wasn’t so well versed in defrosting a large amount of meat, I never planned ahead enough to use it and that continued for many months.
It got to the point that I had no room in my freezer and I couldn’t even buy ice cream, as there was no room in the freezer. No ice cream? Never. Something had to happen.
Thanks to the powers of Google, I researched and came up with a system that works every time. Roasting a chicken, especially if you’re dealing with chickens that are frozen solid, is a two-day process. So here are some tips to use when you want to prepare a roast chicken dinner.
* Two days before you’d like to have roast chicken for dinner, move the chicken from the freezer to the fridge. Make sure it’s in a plastic bag (with no holes) and put it towards the bottom of the fridge, in the off-chance it leaks. I reserve one of the drawers on the bottom of the fridge for meats, just for this kind of situation.
- *An hour or two before you put the chicken in the oven, put the chicken (still in its packaging) in a cold water bath. Change the water every once in a while. This will help in melting any remaining frozen bits.
- *Before you add any of the seasonings, make sure you pat the chicken dry with a couple of paper towels. Having a nice dry chicken will help in getting crispy skin.
*Don’t be shy with the salt. I’ve found that a little salty tastes a lot better than not tasting the salt at all.
*It really helps to have a food thermometer. Better safe than sorry.
I never thought that there would be a big difference amongst different roast chicken recipes, but surprisingly there are! My current favorite is Thomas Keller’s Roast Chicken with Root Vegetables from Ad Hoc at Home.
The next time you see frozen chicken at the supermarket, don’t be afraid! I was. It takes a little planning, but at the end you’ll be rewarded with a terrific and impressive dinner and leftovers for days!