Wednesday, 30 September 2015

The Roast - Others Ideas for Roast Chicken

Continuing with the roast, this time other ways with chicken. Roast chicken seems to be liked by most and this method is my preferred way to cook roast chicken. Sometimes I make a variation such as this version that I call my flat roasted Spanish chicken. It cooks a bit more quickly than the traditional version because the central backbone has been removed and the chicken lays flatter. It is also a good method for cooking on the barbecue. A boned and stuffed roll of chicken is a great way to extend the roast and get more serves. It is also a very easy carve option but more work in the beginning.  I have shown this technique previously as chicken roulade, you can see it here. Both of these versions are about technique and can be easily adapted to your own flavour preferences by using different herbs and spices.

Flat Roasted Spanish Chicken

The smoked paprika butter helps keep the chicken moist and juicy, particularly the breast meat which can easily dry out in the cooking.

The Technique

Top Left: Turn chicken over so that the breast is on the underneath. Use kitchen scissors to remove the backbone.

Top Right: With the backbone removed.

Bottom Left: Place chicken on a tray, spreading it out so that it is a flat as possible. I like to use a bunch of fresh herbs such as thyme and rosemary and some chilli as a nest, it can also be placed on a trivet on the tray.

Bottom Right. Make some flavoured butter, this one is softened butter, smoked paprika and crushed garlic and push under the skin on the breast area and rub a little over the outside.

To Cook
Bake in a hot oven or on the barbecue until cooked, The thigh juices will be clear when pierced with a skewer. Time will vary according to the size of the chicken, this was a small chicken and it was cooked for forty minutes and then rested for twenty. Cut or joint the chicken into smaller portions.

Boned, Stuffed and Rolled

This is a bit more work and creates a nice easy carve roast. Use the bones to make some chicken stock.

The Technique
Bone out the chicken, do not worry too much  about perfection, I tend to cut the thicker areas and remove a little meat and then place that in areas of less meat. The idea is to create a flat piece of chicken of uniform thickness.

Top Left: Turn boned chicken over and join the areas that need to be joined to make a flat shape. I use fine/kitchen string and a needle with a large eye and just lace it together. The string can be easily removed after it is cooked.

Top Right: Turn over and place a roll of stuffing down the centre of the fleshy side of the chicken.

Bottom Left: Roll to enclose the stuffing. Use whatever stuffing you like. This is breadcrumbs, chutney, diced onion and egg. If you want a 'meatier' roast use a combination of minced chicken and breadcrumbs with whatever flavourings you like.

Bottom Right: Secure roll with string tied at intervals of 3 - 4 cm. Rub a little oil over the skin of the chicken and season with some salt and black pepper. The string is easily removed after cooking.

To Cook
Bake in a moderate oven (180 deg C) until cooked, this one was cooked for forty minutes. Rest, remove string and carve into slices.

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