I have decided to take on some of the culinary “challenges” that friends are always emailing to ask about and I’m hoping that starting with roasting a whole chicken will alleviate some of the fears associated with the butcher’s department of the grocery store. One of my favorite recipes derives from Jean George’s recipe “Potatoes That Taste Better Than The Chicken”
Roasted Whole Chicken with Buttery Potatoes
6 tbsp butter (I like a salted butter as it adds a good amount of flavor to the chicken)
6 tbsp olive oil
2 lbss Yukon gold potatoes, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 whole (2 1/2-to-3-pound) chicken
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 sprigs fresh rosemary
4 sprigs fresh thyme
1 head garlic, halved crosswise
Sea Salt, for serving
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Using half of the butter and half of the olive oil, butter a medium-sized baking dish (I like a cast iron pan).
Place potatoes in a single layer in roasting pan. Season chicken inside and out with salt and pepper. Place rosemary, thyme, and garlic inside cavity of chicken; To keep all the good stuff in, with kitchen twine, tie together the legs. Rub chicken with remaining 3 tablespoons each of butter and oil. Place chicken on top of potatoes on one of its sides.
Transfer roasting pan to oven and roast for 20 minutes.
Turn chicken onto its other side and continue roasting 20 minutes more.
Turn chicken, breast side up, and add 2 tablespoons water to pan; continue roasting until juices run clear and the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees on an instant-read thermometer, 10 to 20 minutes more.
Carve chicken in roasting pan allowing the juices to combine with the potatoes. Serve from the roasting pan, spooning pan juices over potatoes. Sprinkle with sea salt.