Our tried and true method for roasting a succulent juicy chicken every time!
- 1 3-4lb whole chicken
- 2 limes
- 1 whole habanero pepper
- 1 sprig of fresh rosemary, torn into smaller pieces
- 1 small bunch of fresh thyme
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander seed
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin seed
- 2 teaspoons sumac
- 2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
- 1 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black peppercorns, divided
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 1 large sweet or red onion
- 2 medium-large carrots
- 2 celery stalks
- 2 yukon gold potatoes
- 6–8 unpeeled garlic cloves
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 1/2 cup water
- Preheat a heavy-bottomed roasting pan at 450˚F/230˚C on the center rack of the oven while you prep the chicken and vegetables. An enameled cast iron roaster is recommended.
- Cut limes in half and have some paper towels ready to go. Place raw chicken in a large bowl and squeeze limes over the chicken. Turn the lime halves inside out and rub them all over the skin and inside the cavity. Pat the chicken dry with the paper towels and transfer to a dry bowl. Discard limes. Wash hands.
- Salt the skin and cavity of the chicken with 2 teaspoons of kosher salt. Then add the whole habanero pepper, rosemary, thyme, coriander, cumin, sumac, 1 teaspoon black pepper, and 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil to the bowl. Rub the herbs, spices, and oil all over the chicken skin and under the skin of the breasts. Wash hands.
- Peel the onion and cut it into large wedges. Peel and cut carrots into 1-inch sized pieces. Trim celery stalks and cut into 2-3 inch long pieces. Cut potatoes into 8 long wedges each. Leave the skins on garlic cloves. Add veggies to a separate bowl and toss them with the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper, and 2 bay leaves.
- Once the roaster is preheated, remove it from the oven and add the prepped veggies to the pan in 1 layer. They will sizzle when they hit the hot pan. Watch out for oil splatter.
- Tuck in the tips of the chicken wings and place the chicken breasts up over the veggies. Place the habanero into the chicken cavity opening.
- Use your hand to scrape out any oil and seasoning left in the bowl over the chicken breasts. Wash hands.
- Place the roaster back in the oven and lower the temperature to 425˚F/220˚C. Roast for 45 minutes, turning the pan halfway through the cooking time.
- Combine 1/2 cup of white wine and 1/2 cup of water in a liquid measuring cup.
- Remove the roaster from the oven and pour the wine-water mixture over the chicken and vegetables. Shake the pan to loosen the vegetables from the bottom.
- Return the roaster to the oven and then turn off the oven. Let the chicken slow-cook for another 30 minutes with the oven turned off.
- After 30 minutes test the temperature of the thigh meat with an instant thermometer. 165˚F/74˚C is the safe minimum cooking temperature for poultry. Another way to check that poultry is cooked through is if the juices run clear and the leg and thigh meat fall off the bone easily.
- Let the chicken rest for 10 minutes before carving it. Serve hot and spoon the roasted veggies and pan juices over the meat.
- If you can’t source sumac then just leave it out. Feel free to add other spices and/or herbs as you like.
- Wrap leftovers and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Reheat to serve.
- Save the chicken carcass to make broth.
- We found it unnecessary to truss the chicken and prefer the way it cooks untrussed.
- The garlic can be squeezed out of its peel like roasted garlic.
- We like to rub the roasted habanero over the chicken meat for some extra heat and flavor. This is totally optional and you can leave it out completely if you don’t like spice.