The rotisserie whole chickens looked so tempting. Every Wednesday evening while driving home from work, I would drive past the mobile food truck on the N2 road from Brussels to Leuven.
I just had to stop.
So one Wednesday evening, I stopped and walked towards the food truck.
There was only one guy manning the truck that evening. I pointed to the chicken I wanted and some baked potatoes. The guy then packed the roasted bird in a microwaveable paper bag, and a separate bag for the potatoes.
I was pretty certain my guys at home would be beaming with delight from what I had just bought.
BUT … Most unfortunately what you see is not what you get! The chicken was juiceless and shrivelled when I carved the meat. No doubt it was cooked through, but the taste was rather bland. I suspected only salt, pepper and paprika powder were used to season the chicken. To add salt to injury, the potatoes were swimming in buckets of dripping! Urgh!
Hubby had his last words, “Don’t buy this chicken any more!”
I Did It My Way …!
Okay, I did not buy the rotisserie whole chicken anymore from the food truck, but we have had some form of rotisserie whole chicken at home, done my way *big smile*
Oh by the way, I had been fiddling with the flavours of the chicken and I have found the right one, me thinks!
I oven-baked this whole chicken last Sunday and my family of 4 finished the entire bird and licked our platters clean!
Here’s how I did it.
First of all, pre-heat the oven at 190 degrees Celsius.
Rinse and pat dry 1 whole chicken weighing at least 1.5kg. Set the chicken aside to room temperature for at least half an hour.
In a clean bowl, mix together your favourite dry herbs and spices, sea salt and freshly-milled black pepper. The choice is endless, so don’t be shy. Stir well to combine.
Meanwhile, stuff the cavity of the chicken with 4 cloves garlic, 1 lemon or lime (halved), 1 onion (quartered), a few slices of ginger and fresh rosemary. Tie the legs together and tuck the wings under the chicken. This is the trick to keep the chicken sappy AND tasty from inception to end. *wink*
Next, drizzle some olive oil over the chicken and transfer the homemade rub mixture all over the chicken. Then comes the most therapeutic part … massage the chicken thoroughly with the rub mixture making sure every nook and cranny of the bird is being swaddled completely.
Finally, transfer the chicken, breast-side up onto a baking tray, lined with (olive) oiled and seasoned potatoes and/ or root vegetables, onions, garlics and fresh rosemary.
By the way, I have oven-baked whole chicken a few times already. I discovered that baking at the right temperature and timing are paramount execution in getting the best equilibrium. Believe you me, I have had a few charred experiences. It was only by several trials and errors that I can finally say, Eureka!
Well, I will definitely not buy the rotisserie chicken from the food truck anymore, that’s for sure!
What can I say, nothing beats homemade cooking any day, any time. Simple as that!
A word of caution though, this foolproof baking is in accordance to the type of oven I own. You may have a different oven than mine, hence, the temperature and timing may or may not differ. And I did mention that it was by several trials and errors that I finally got the bird cooked right, my way *wink*
Have a great week ahead!