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crispy chicken skin

after roasting a whole chicken with crisp skin, you let the chicken rest for 10-15 min..and the skin is no longer crisp so I now eat chicken without resting it as suggested by all recipes. Any other methods?

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  1. I'm curious. Do you cover the chicken and hence steam it? Mine just sits on the cutting board uncovered and remains crispy. BTW I do the Zuni method if that matters.

    2 Replies
    1. re: c oliver

      No, i don't cover anything I cook in the oven. I just roast the chicken at 450 for about an hour. The skin comes out crisp but after resting it for a while, it is no longer crisp.

      1. re: Monica

        Do you cover the chicken while it's resting?

    2. Hold the chicken inside the oven uncovered @ 140* for up to 2 hours.....just before you eat, remove the chicken from the oven for 5 minutes, while you crank up the oven to 450 and replace the chicken in for 5 minutes.....

      Or you can crisp under the broiler, carefully at the end of your normal resting period.

      4 Replies
      1. re: fourunder

        I respectfully disagree with this method. Two hours at 140 will render the chicken DRY.

        1. re: letsindulge

          @ 140*, you are not cooking....only keeping warm. If the chicken is dry, then it was overcooked to begin with.

          1. re: fourunder

            So are you saying to "under" cook it initially so you can hold it for 2 hours @ 140?

            1. re: letsindulge

              Whichever recipe you use....I don't use a thermometer for chicken....Whether you do a T Keller, Zuni or j.Child...45-75 minute high heat roast...or a lower temperature...once you deem it is done, you reduce the heat in the oven to 140. This is how a Commercial Restaurant or Catering Facility would handle a roasted poultry item...A supermarket will roast to 180+...but I believe the code calls for 165, before you hold. The range of temperature, depending on your local rules, could be anywhere from 135-165 .

              The old standard, used to be 125. but that has since changed for fear of litigation. The cook and hold ovens used to be able to be set @ 100-125..but the newer ones are higher. With regards to *under* cook, that would depend on the size and weight of the chicken, what temperature you roasted at and the time you expect to hold to factor in the carryover effect. At 375*, the carryover will not be as great as if you used 450*. ..and a smaller bird will rise more than a larger one.

              Typically, a restaurant or place like Boston Chicken serving roasted chickens would plan for them to be finished up to two hours in advance and be held, thus being able to put a second batch of chickens to be ready for later service...and repeated if necessary...Whether you like BC or not, i think we could at least agree to be profitable, they would have to cook and hold enough chickens to sell in a manner that is efficient and maintains the integrity and quality of the product.

      2. I let it rest, but I never cover it - the skin stays fairly crispy that way (although not quite as much as if you eat it immediately). I also like to rest it upright, so it doesn't sit in a pool of its own juices - a can or liter bottle works well for this.

        1. Carving it up without resting is a bad idea.

          Do you tent the cooked chicken while you rest it? If so, don't.

          You also can remove the skin while it rests and keep it in the oven or toaster oven.

          1. Key to crispy chicken skin?

            Baking powder.


            10 Replies
            1. re: ipsedixit

              Interesting. What do you do? do you sprinkle baking powder on chicken before you roast?

              1. re: Monica

                My thoughts....it does aid in crisping skin, particularly pig skin, but it also alters it to the point it almost weird if left on too long. You also need to brush it with vinegar to neutralize it after applying.

                1. re: fourunder

                  but that would neutralize the alkaline shift which is what speeds up the Maillard reaction

                  1. re: scubadoo97

                    I can't help you with the Scientific aspect of the Maillard Reaction...but I'm pretty sure it will still happen. My understanding from others and recipes in magazines for Crispy Cantonese Style Roast Pig, the alkaline from the BS/BP needs to be neutralized so there is no metallic taste.


                    here's a Pork Shoulder I roasted last night to show the effects.

                2. re: Monica

                  Mix a bit with some salt. About 3:1 ratio. Rub it on the skin before roasting.

                  As fourunder mentioned above it's usually used for duck (especially as a short cut for Peking style ducks) but it works just as well with chicken.

                  1. re: ipsedixit

                    Interesting. I wonder if a bit of corn starch will also do the trick.

                    1. re: Monica

                      Hrm... corn starch might do something in more of a crusty, rather than crispy, way, but I'm not sure. I think the alkalinity of the baking soda encourages the Maillard reaction, helping to brown and crisp the skin. (Please, someone correct me if I'm wrong.)

                  2. I rest my high heat roasted chicken for about 15 minutes and the skin stays very crisp, so I am not sure what is happening for you.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: magiesmom

                      I'm also not clear swhy the skin is no longer crisp. I roast chicken and sometimes let it rest as long as 20 minutes and it's still mighty crisp. Even after I eat, the chicken on the bird still has crisp skin. I usually dry brine chicken but if I don't have time I at least let it sit uncovered in the fridge for as long as I can and dry the skin as thoroughly as possible, roasting at 450F or higher.

                    2. Clicked on this thread hoping that someone had found a way to keep the skin crispy. sigh. Life is filled with small disappointments.

                      Fortunately, there's always gribenes. That's a Yiddish word for chicken (duck, goose) skin that has been crisped in rendered chicken (duck, goose) fat. Think of it as kosher bacon. Like bacon, (and unlike the skin on a roasted fowl) gribenes retains its crunch while it sits around for hours or days. Eat out of hand, sprinkle on salads, sprinkle atop mashed potatoes, etc. It is the supreme topping for cassoulet.

                      Calories? if you have to ask, you can't afford to eat it.

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: AdinaA

                        if i want crispy skin, i air-dry the bird in the fridge at least 24 hours, 48 hours if i remember. makes for super crispy skin with zero effort.

                        1. re: hotoynoodle

                          This- brine it, then dry it, and really, really dry it.

                          If I want to roast a chicken on Friday, I buy it on Tuesday, brine it until Thursday morning, then dry it on a cooling rack in the fridge until Friday afternoon, turning about 3 times. Bring to room temp before roasting. Crispity crisp.

                          1. re: cheesemonger

                            i don't ever wet-brine birds.

                            it's a messy hassle that takes up too much room in the fridge. i will dry-brine.

                      2. Pull the skin off the chicken right away, place on a pan in the turned-off oven while the bird rests.

                        5 Replies
                        1. re: greygarious

                          Since I don't have the problem,.... but for many of us, the oven is being used for something else during that resting phase.

                            1. re: greygarious

                              Once you do that, you might as well go all the way with the shorn off skin.


                              1. re: greygarious

                                Or, you know just eat it while you're waiting.

                                1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                  This. The last roast chicken I made was for dinner with a dear friend. Comfortable enough with each other to not worry about being proper. Brought the chicken to the table, and we started our meal by pulling skin off and eating it right away.

                              2. After resting you can toss it under the broiler to crisp the skin if it's gotten soggy just before serving.

                                1. I find that letting the chicken sit in the refrigerator overnight unwrapped, uncovered helps dry the skin significantly. In addition, before baking, I brush the skin with melted butter and start the roasting process at a high temp of 425 for only about 15 minutes, then dropping the temp to 350 for about another 40 minutes (depending on the size of the bird).

                                  When done, let rest, but don't cover! The skin comes out crispy and the meat is cooked, but still juicy inside.


                                  1. convection oven works well.....

                                    1. Dry brine, uncovered in the fridge for a few days if you can.

                                      Roast with convection, if you can.

                                      Don't cover bird while resting. Trim any flabby skin off of roasted bird and render fat in a small pan, let it crisp. I can eat them like chips.

                                      1. If you dry brine it uncovered in the fridge a day or two before roasting and butterfly it and roast on a rack or over a bed of veggies at high temp (450f), there will be very crisp skin that stays crisp. The air drying really makes a huge diff. butterflying means the whole bird has crispy skin, not just one side.