HOME > Chowhound > Outer Boroughs >


roasting a whole chicken

  • n

Now theres a pretty simple (yet wonderful) thing we've never gotten around to mastering at home. Well this weekend that's going to change. Planning on Keller's recipe.

So the question is where's the best place to find an extraordinary bird to roast? Not worried about price...just want healthy (organic?) and delicious so that any negatives are down to our mastery of the preparation, not an inferior bird.

We live in Cobble Hill. I was thinking of getting it at Los Paisanos as I seem to remember they have Bell & Evans, etc. Or Staubitz. Any other nearby (pref walkable) suggestions?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. A post from a few months ago - gives details on staubitz, etc:

    1 Reply
    1. d'Artagnan chicken...far and away the best I've ever tasted in the US....for roasting, try to get one of their blue foot chickens...really extraordinary!...I can get it in my local Food Emporium...and also in Grace's Marketplace....


      1. STAUBITZ is the best choice. They have organic, free range chickens. I have never been disappointed with their birds.

        1. Get on the train and go to Union Square Greenmarket on Saturday morning. Get one of Violet Hill Farm's Belle Rouge chickens. Much better than any chicken you will get in a grocery store. Get there early; he sells out fast.

          1. ..It's hard to beat a MURRAY'S CHICKEN...

            1 Reply
            1. re: hopkicker3

              Watch me. I like Murray's fine, if you brine.

              But you can't beat a poulet de bresse. Or a bluefoot. Pure chickenny goodness. And if you do roast it; make sure you use Cooks Illustrated recipe. 375, coat with butter or oil if you want to retain kosherness of a kosher chicken. Pepper only if you use a brined or kosher chicken.

              Start on wingside, rotate every 25 minutes, first to other wing, then to back, then to breast. I like to shoot the heat up to 425 for a couple minutes to get the skin crispy, but most of the crisping begins with a well air-dried bird.

              This is for a three - four pound bird.

              Let rest for 25 minutes under a foil tent.

              Oh the joy of McGee and Kimball

            2. My plan is for Thomas Keller's recipe :) In the future I'll try other methods to see what comes out best.


                1. I second d'Artagnan chickens. I roast one almost every weekend. Since I'm in Manhattan, I can't tell you where in Cobble Hill you might find one. But check out their site for info.


                  - Sean

                  1. I second the Greenmarket, but I'd go to Grand Army Plaza for a Flying Pigs Farm chicken--in fact I did, this morning. Juicy, never been frozen. You might still be lucky. Also Ray--the tomato and garlic guy--will have chickens starting next week. Both of these people's eggs are great too.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: tamara

                      I realize I'm a little late as the bird has already been roasted, but i wanted to second the recommendation for ray's chickens at the GAP greenmarket.

                      the other great chickens are the ones for sale at the Red Hook farmer's market. (I think they might be cloonshee) I've never been disappointed by them--they taste amazing. However, they do come frozen, so not so great for same day eating.

                    2. Well yesterday was the day.

                      I went to Staubitz and was talked out of Murray's or Bell and Evans (both of which they had) in favor of a free range Canadian bird which he said was the best they had.

                      Wow, the meal was superb. Keller's recipe is simple and awesome. Even the trussing wasnt diffing. I did of course set the smoke alarms off for stretches of 5 mins at a time from the smoke with the high (450 degree) heat the recipe calls for.

                      Thanks for the advice guys. I had no idea it would be so easy to do this and now plan to roast chickens as often as I can ;)

                      8 Replies
                      1. re: Nehna

                        Ya got a Giannone, did ya? Love that boid.

                        1. re: Monkey Man Jake

                          I didnt actually catch what the butcher said the name of the canadian bird was. Is that what it would have been? Would be nice to know for next time.

                          1. re: Nehna

                            Giannone makes the most popular variety of the Canadian Blue Foot chicken. Well, they don't MAKE it... mommy and daddy bluefoot chickens make it. But they farm it. Or ranch it? Whatever, I eat it.

                            1. re: Monkey Man Jake

                              I dont believe it was a blue foot, as its feet werent blue (and from the pictures I've seen, the blue foot is named as such because of the quite blue feet?).

                              I'm going to have to call Staubitz and ask what I had.

                              On a separate note, any tips to avoiding the smoke alarm mess I dealt with? It seemed to get easier when I opened all the windows up and turned on a fan. But considering winter is coming... My father in law suggested draining the dripping periodically but I dont want to waste them or mess with the perfect temp in the oven.

                              1. re: Nehna

                                It's not a bad idea to interrupt cooking from time to time, you know. So when you baste/rotate the bird, just grab a turkey baster and pull out some drippings. I do keep my windows open, even in winter.

                                1. re: Monkey Man Jake

                                  You can put some water in that dripping pan.Tho that wont help with the droplets of fat that hit the oven walls. With the high temp roasting method, you risk burning the drippings anyway. If you dont have a good exhaust system the smoke is part of high temp - my family used to laugh every thanksgiving.Wouldnt worry much about opening the oven.

                                  1. re: Monkey Man Jake

                                    Keller's recipe doesnt call for any basting or turning but I guess it would be easier enough to pull the bird out of the oven and get some drippings out once or twice. It was like an inferno in there though! :)

                                  2. re: Nehna

                                    a shower cap placed over the smoke alarm keeps the smoke from getting to it--just remember to take it off when you are finished cooking.

                          2. This might seem all to redneck for some of you but the best roast chicken ive ever tasted was beercan chicken get yourself one of these racks and do a search on some recipes. http://search.cartserver.com/search/s...

                            No need to baste(as Alton says it doesnt add moisture) and incredable crispy skin on all sides of the bird(my favorite part) and juicy. This way the bird doesnt sit in its own grease and self drains. Add some beer, wine, water to the drip pan to add more aromatics and to keep from getting burnt drippings making smoke.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: mingt

                              Another way to avoid it sitting in its own grease is to use a trivet. I didnt have one handy but I managed to put a small metal rack into the roasting pan which I sat the bird on top of, this way it was never touching its grease.

                              1. re: Nehna

                                Try grabbing a couple of grids from the range top, wrap in tin foil, poke holes it=n them and usde that for a make shift rack

                            2. Staubitz has the d'Artagnan Canadian Blue Foot chickens, but you need to call ahead. They always get a few, but if they don't have specific orders they freeze them, and they're not as good.

                              1. We finally tried the Keller recipe last night with one of the kosher chickens on sale this week @ Fairway. Gorgeous!

                                We used about 1/2 the salt called for since the bird was already brined, and per a commenter on Epicurious, added sliced potatoes under the chicken to soak up the dripping grease and help the smoking issue.

                                I can't wait to get a nice chicken at Staubitz and try this again.

                                1. Cloonshee Farms chicken... Red Hook Farm had some last week. Deevine.

                                  Never underestimate the crockpot. Yes, I really did say crockpot.

                                  Cut up some potatoes, onions, celery, and carrots. toss with a little salt and pepper and place in the bottom of the crockpot. Sprinkle the chicken with salt, pepper and freshly minced tarragon and place a pear or apple inside the chicken. Place the chicken on top of the veggies breast side down. Let cook for 7 1/2 -8 hours on low (the internal temp should be around 170 by then). The chicken will be moist and delicious

                                  Remove the chicken and let stand for 10 minutes before serving. Also remove the vegetables with a slotted spoon, and you will have lovely juices remaining. Use for a 'pan' gravy or as a base for matzoh ball soup.

                                  1. ok, inspired by this discussion, i tried the thomas keller recipe. It was pretty good, but I stand by the crockpot.

                                    This recipe was in Yankee Magazine last month. The chicken was golden brown, juicy and delicious. Definitely will use this method again.

                                    Roasted Natural Chicken with Roots (Yankee Magazine)
                                    Preparation Time: 30 minutes

                                    Start to Finish Time: 135 minutes

                                    Yield: 4 servings

                                    1 3-pound naturally raised chicken
                                    2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
                                    Kosher or sea salt, to taste
                                    2 sprigs fresh rosemary
                                    1 small juicing orange, quartered
                                    1 small Macomber or local white turnip, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
                                    4 to 6 red or yellow beets, peeled and halved if small, quartered if larger
                                    2 medium yellow onions, peeled and quartered
                                    3 carrots, peeled
                                    Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
                                    Heat oven to 450°. Rub outside of chicken with 1 tablespoon oil, then season with a few pinches of salt.

                                    Stuff cavity with rosemary and orange, squeezing orange pieces to release juices. Scatter vegetables in a roasting pan, then toss with remaining 1 tablespoon oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Place chicken on top of vegetables and cook breast side up.

                                    After about 30 minutes, lower oven temperature to 350° and cook 30 to 45 minutes longer, or until a thermometer inserted into the thigh reads 165°. Remove from oven and let rest 20 minutes before slicing. Serve with roasted vegetables and juices from the pan.