I’ve been meaning to post this all winter, so now that it is a rainy day, and I have a brined fryer chicken on hand, its my chance. I have tried many recipes, I have had a lot of dry chickens! I eventually created a recipe out of bits and pieces of others as well as tweeking things from my experiments. I still have yet to try making two chickens at the same time, one brined and one not. But I definitely brine mine. It’s so simple, but it takes 12 hours, so if you are in a hurry, skip the brining.
Take a bowl or tupperware large enough to fit a whole 4-5 pound chicken in. If you are planning on doing this a lot, I would recommend going to your local restaurant supply shop and buying a container with a lid, mine is 3.5 liters. Here is Tundra’s site, they also ship, but they are located in Boulder.
For the brine:
1/2 cup honey
1/3 cup kosher salt
6 cloves garlic, whole
Tbsp whole peppercorn
In the container you are going to add a couple cups warm water. Then add salt and honey and stir until melted and dissolved. Add lemons, garlic and peppercorns. Put chicken in, fill with cold (preferably iced) water. Seal and and put in fridge over night, or up to 12 hours.
4 lb chicken, or about that
1/2 to 1 stick butter
8 cloves garlic
Salt and pepper
Herbs such as oregano or thyme
1 onion, diced large
5 cups root vegetables, diced large (butternut, sweet potatoes, celeriac, potatoes, acorn, etc)
*Preheat oven to 475
1. Take chicken out of brine, and set on rack or sheet pan for up to an hour, until dry, or dry-ish.
2. Toss vegetables and onion in olive oil, herbs and sea salt and put into casserole dish that will fit the chicken as well.
3. Generously salt and pepper the chicken, then get butter all under the skin and onto the breast and thighs. (Gently slide your fingers in between the skin and the breast, pulling the skin apart and slide whole garlic cloves and butter in there.)
4. Season with herbs, and put in oven for 25 minutes. After 25 minutes, turn heat to 375 and cook for an additional 40 minutes, or until the juices run clear and your thermometer reads 160 in the thigh.
5. Bring out chicken, let rest 10-20 minutes. Cut the breasts, thighs and wings off and serve with the vegetables. Enjoy!