|twistedchick (twistedchick) wrote in thefourthvine,|
Wherever you get it, be sure to keep it in the coldest part of your fridge before you prepare it. Take it out of its wrapping, rinse it under cold water, and if you bought a whole bird there may be a packet inside the chest cavity. That is likely to contain the neck, heart, liver and gizzard. You can cook these, or you can put them aside in the freezer and when you get enough of them you can simmer them with a bay leaf and garlic in a lot of water for a couple of hours and make chicken stock.
Anyway. If you want to roast the bird, you don't have to stuff it formally like a turkey. You can put a whole lemon inside for flavor, or pieces of potato or onion, and put it in a roasting pan. Opinions differ as to whether you should cover the pan or not; I have a self-basting pan, with a lid designed to collect moisture that evaporates and drip it back on whatever's in the pan, so I generally use the lid. Since I'm trying to be lower-cholesterol, if I have less than a whole bird I take the skin off, rub the bird with olive oil and put on dried oregano, basil, sage, parsley or other herbs. Put a tablespoon or two of wine in the bottom of the pan, cut up some carrots or potatoes or sweet potatoes and put those in the pan, put the lid on and cook it in the oven at 300 degrees F for an hour. Put a knife into it to see if it's done; if the juice is pink, it's not done yet. If you have a whole bird, shake the drumstick to see if it's done; if it is, the drumstick will move easily.
If you roast it without a lid, you may have to go into the oven to baste it a couple of times, or (if you are not worried about fat) you could lay strips of bacon over the top and the legs of the bird and let those keep it from drying out if you think that might happen.
You can also steam a whole chicken in a pressure cooker -- for that, check the pressure cooker's directions.