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the real reason to roast a chicken!

I always look forward to scraping off the thick potato slices from under the chicken that I oven roast. After an hour of soaking in the chicken fat and juices they are divine! By then they are dark and carmelized and the real reason to roast a chicken.....


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  1. Oh yeah, baby!! Those look gorgeous and mouth watering...

    Reminds me of when I made Marcella's chicken w/ two lemons and added potatoes to the roasting pan. Final dish seen here: http://i2.photobucket.com/albums/y45/...

    The weather's been so cool lately here that I think roast chicken and potatoes are in order!

    1 Reply
    1. re: Carb Lover

      Okay...I love lemon chicken and yours looks fabulous!

    2. Good looking chicken & potatoes - ah, the simple things in life!

        1. I use a combination of onions and potatoes when roasting a chicken - after the onions have been roasting in the juices and fat of a chicken for an hour, they are AWESOME. They're almost buttery, and almost melt in your mouth. The potatoes are good too, but the onions always go first.

          1. I can see that - basically an onion confit!

            1. I want some of those. Do you roast the chicken on a rack above the potatoes?

              1. I roast the chicken directly on top of them but I guess it would also work on a rack? One thing about having the chicken on top is that the potato won't dry out too much - the part of the potato touching the pan will get really carmelized but the top won't due to the chicken - contrast can be good. On the other hand, with a rack the top will get more roasted - as long as it doesn't get dried out, that could be good also.
                Originally I learned this technique from a butcher - it was his way of keeping the chicken skin from sticking to the sheetpan and having to scrape it off. The potatoes were used in lieu of a rack - albeit without the air flow underneath. Time for some experiments?

                1. The Cooks Illustrated recipe, which has been often mentioned on this board, has you roast the butterfied bird on the perforated top of a broiler pan, with seasoned potatoes beneath. This really works perfectly.

                  1. Oh yeah...that's the food version of porn.

                    1 Reply
                    1. I do that too (mandoline-d). Try tossing in garlic cloves (unpeeled), then squeeze the little gems to release the ooze of creamy garlic onto crusty bread...mmmm.

                      1. Unbelievable! After checking out this little discussion, I tried the potato under the bird thing. At first I was worried, because the potatoes not directly under the chicken seemed to be drying out, but I think this was perhaps because I left the thing covered for too long. Once I uncovered it, the pan just flooded with delicious delicious fat which seeped into the potatoes and made them absolutely incredible. I had to restrain myself from doing it again the next night. Next time I'd like to cook twice as many potatoes this way.

                        questions though: For how long should you leave a roasting chicken covered? I dont' want to burn it, of course.
                        What is the limit on how many layers of potatoes you can cook this way under the bird. I dont' want to end up with mashed roasted potatoes (yeah. that would sure be unpleasant.)

                        This rocks!

                        1. Ina goes a similar thing, with cut lemon halves and thyme in the cavity, but sat on a bed of root veg (onions, carrots, parsnips, etc). She does the potatoes separately with garlic and rosemary.