Katie Vs. The Chicken

There’s something incredibly satisfying about cooking a whole chicken. It gives you an inflated sense of confidence, in a “why yes, I could have been a fifties house wife” kind of way. You get this idyllic image in your head of yourself, dressed in a flouncy white apron pulling a crispy golden bird out of the oven.

In all honesty, it’s freaking disgusting. There’s knives and guts and all sorts of gross stuff. But we’ll get to that later.

The recipe I used is from A NEW BOOK that my Aunt sent me. Barefoot Contessa. It’s amazing. Oh yeah. All the recipe requires is:

1 Whole chicken, 5-6 pounds.

1 Lemon, cut in half.

1 Head of garlic, cut lengthwise.

2 Tablespoons of melted butter

1 Bunch of fresh thyme

1 Onion, sliced

Salt and pepper

And that’s it! Pretty straightforward, right? At least, that’s what I thought.


I purchased my chicken at trader joe’s. Here’s the little guy:

It's okay to be jealous of my spiderman apron.

The first step is to place the chicken in the sink, and remove the giblets. Giblets is a nice name for nasty ass chicken organs. I really did not enjoy this part. Especially when a tiny kidney landed on my hand.

At least they come in a little bag...

I strongly recommend you put the giblets and chicken trash in a bag, and throw it away outside. If you throw it away in your kitchen, it will start to smell like a zombie fart.

Next, rinse the chicken inside and out. Pat dry with a paper towel, making extra sure to remove as much water as possible from the cavity. According to Caitlyn, cavity is a nice name for what used to be the uterus. So that’s fun.

Now place the chicken breast side up in a roasting pan. Take the lemon and squeeze the juice over the skin, and sprinkle it liberally with salt and pepper. This is where it gets awkward. You’re going to take the lemon, garlic, and thyme, and stuff it inside the cavity. I always feel really rude doing this.

I just feel so awkward right now.

You guys. Get excited. Guess what we’re going to use?!

Aw yeahhhh


Okay calm down. It’s not that exciting.

Using the BASTING BRUSH you’re going to coat the skin of the chicken in butter. This will make it crispy and delicious.

Check out that sweet basting brush action.

Last step before baking! Using twine (or thread from the sewing kit your mom made you take to college) you’re going to tie the chicken’s legs together.

Girl, put your legs together.

Scatter the slice onion in the pan, then put it in the oven! The chicken will bake at 425 degrees for about an hour and a half. There are a few ways to check for doneness: you can use a meat thermometer, cut the joint between the thigh and body and see if the juices run clear, or wiggle the leg. I like the last one best. If the leg wiggles too loosely, it’s not done. If it gives some resistance, you can go ahead and take it out.

So. You roasted a whole chicken. It’s sitting on your counter.

How do you eat it…..exactly?

I found carving the chicken a wee bit stressful. I just felt mean. Basically, you hack off the legs and set them aside. Then you remove the breast meat by working a knife around the cartilage. Super cute, right?

I'm sorry I'm sorry I'm sorry!

Once you move past destroying the innocent chicken with knives, it turns into this deliciousness:

Om nom nom nom.

Put the chicken carcass in a large plastic bag in your freezer for days you want to make soup! Hooray!



February 7, 2012. Tags: , , . Uncategorized.


  1. Patrick replied:

    It certainly was delicious, and I am jealous of your Spiderman apron.

  2. liftingasweclimb replied:

    Lovely. Try adding a sprig or two of fresh thyme when serving. You can plunk it on top of the chicken or the rice/potato/starch.

    Lots of things to be done with the innards: chopped liver, New Orleans dirty rice.

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