Valley Bounty: Chicken

Modern food pop-culture has bestowed on the chicken a number of all-new anatomical attributes: the chicken finger, the nugget, the cutlet, and who could forget chicken “wyngz” (which are, of course, legally distinct from chicken “wings”), to name a few. Whether or not these chicken permutations have a time and a place is between each eater and their stomach, but I do think there’s some value in getting back to basics by roasting a whole chicken yourself.

Brining is a nice way to give a chicken some added flavor, but assuming I have failed to plan ahead (which is virtually guaranteed), I’ll usually just mix together some minced garlic, chopped rosemary, salt, pepper, and melted butter, then make a few small incisions in the chicken’s skin so I can apply the mixture between the skin and the flesh with a small basting brush or a spoon. I roast my chicken in the oven in a cast iron skillet at 400°F — it usually takes about an hour, but I like to defer to a meat thermometer (I’m looking for 165°F in the thickest part of the thigh). This is an easy and delicious dinner that usually yields some leftovers — plus, you can have yourself some chicken “oysters”, if you know where to look.

Valley Bounty is written by Brian Snell of CISA (Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture)