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Jan 22, 2013 07:55 AM

Roasting Chicken for first time - Need help with vegetables

I am roasting a chicken for the first time. It's smallish just under 4 lbs. I want to roast it over brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes. (Does that combination sound alright?) I will be cooking the chicken in a v-shaped rack over the vegetables. Will they cook together at the same time? Do I need to start the chicken and then add the veggies? I was planning on starting with high heat 450 for the first 15 minutes and then dropping down to 375 for the remainder or the time. Any ideas/assistance would be greatly appreciated!

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  1. The sweet potatoes can be added to the pan with the chicken and they will be done when the chicken is done in about 1 hour. I would only add the Brussels sprouts when you lower the temperature because they should only take 40 minutes or so to finish roasting.
    So, potatoes from the beginning, sprouts when you reduce the temperature after 15-20 minutes.

    1. Use a very hot oven (450) for first 15 to 20 minutes, then reduce temp. Your chicken will have seared skin and remain very juicy. Agree to add sprouts later. Check out timing for roast sprouts.

      1. No definitely to the brussel sprouts. Steam them and serve separately from the sweet potatoes. The two veg don't go well together. Yes you can put the chicken on the sweet potatoes. (Sorry everyone but here goes). Preheat the oven to 200 F NO HIGHER! Don't rub anything on the bird. Just a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Put your roasting pan with the bird in it in the oven UNCOVERED!!!! The bird will take a couple of hours at least. Check the internal temp after one hour. Check again every half an hour. The surface of the bird will look undercooked. When the internal temp reaches 155 F crank up the oven to BROIL. Now watch the bird like a hawk. In a couple of minutes the skin on the bird will turn a nice golden brown. Now remove the bird and put a piece of tin foil lightly over the bird. The internal temp. will continue to go up to about 160-165. Rest the bird for at least fifteen-twenty minutes.
        It's hard for some people to go 'low and slow' and have faith in the process. I hope you aren't one of them for the birds sake.
        The photo is a 'low and slow' turkey cooked the way I have described to you.

        8 Replies
        1. re: Puffin3

          A couple HOURS for a < 4 lb. chicken? That's slow cooking, for sure, but not for me.
          I've never made a dry bird in far, far less time.
          OP, you can go low and slow or high and much quicker, and neither are high crimes against foul ;-)

          1. re: Puffin3

            Low heat for a long time, that seems like a perfect way to dry the out the bird. The way I recommended is knows as "German" with high heat up front to seal the skin pores.

            1. re: Puffin3

              Cooking a chicken at 200 degrees presents some food safety issues.

              Also the dark meat's connective tissue won't be fully dissolved which is sort of unpleasant.

              1. re: C. Hamster

                I'm guessing Heston knows what he's doing. I have been roasting chickens and turkeys 'low and slow' for a few years and every one has turned out perfectly cooked 'throughout' (throughout being the operative word). Read Heston's recipe and maybe your concern about food safety and connective tissue may be eased somewhat.

                1. re: Puffin3

                  No, thanks.

                  You may or may not get sick eating a chicken cooked at 200 to a 150 internal but its not worth the risk. And even if you don't get sick, the dark meat will be unpleasant at best.

                  1. re: C. Hamster

                    So IYO what Heston is recommending is potentially dangerous and the "dark meat" will be unpleasant at best? No dark meat on any bird I've ever 'low and slow' roasted has ever tasted "unpleasant" to me or the many many dozens of guests who have eaten it. Maybe when they always compliment me on how moist and delicious the birds are they are just being kind. LOL
                    Did you actually read Heston's piece?

                    1. re: Puffin3

                      Interestingly, if you look at older cookbooks, they will often recommend cooking chicken only to the point where the meat is pink around the bones. There is a risk of salmonella, listeria, etc., but it is only a risk, not an absolute.

            2. The sweet potatoes and sprouts certainly can co-mingle as they cook under the chicken. The chicken's juices will make them delicious.
              Brussel and sweet potato hash is a winner too, so maybe an idea for any leftovers.

              1. Sounds good and a good choice of veggies. Check your bird with a probe thermometer take out at 165-170 tent and let it rest for 15 min+/-.