Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Fastest Way to Cereal For Breakfast

The original title for the post was to be

I was testing out a recipe to hopefully share with you guys. I found it at Quick and Easy, Cheap and Healthy food blog. It's a recipe from The Minimalist Cooks Dinner by Mark Bittman for roasting chicken in your oven in 30 minutes. 

I ran into a few snags along the way. It took much longer than anticipated, and no one cared for how it tasted, so everyone ended up fending for themselves for dinner (read: cereal). Well, here are my lessons learned:

  1. Read the ingredients carefully. The recipe calls for a 3-4 lb chicken. The size of the bird would be critical to the cook time. I had chosen a nice plump 5+ lb chicken. Mistake 1.
  2. I don't care for Tarragon. The recipe called for using Tarragon, a spice which I am not familiar with. I considered using alternatives instead, but thought, why not try something new. I smelled and tasted the Tarragon before using it - it has a minty taste.
  3. Breast Side Down vs Breast Side Up. The recipe directions said to place in pan "breast side up", but the photos show "breast side down". I went with the "up". I think this also affected cooking time. (More on this in a second.)
  4. A whole chicken is messy. Once it was finally done cooking, I had to let it "rest", then carve it. The carcas, the juices, the bones... my kitchen was a disaster area. Not a weeknight Quick Fix I was looking for. 

The concept behind the Fastest Way to Roast a Chicken is to preheat the pan and the oven together while you are prepping the chicken. So when the chicken hits the pan, it's already starting to cook. I love this shortcut! If I had placed my chicken breast side down in the pan, the meatiest parts would have started cooking immediately and my cooking time would have been faster.

I may decide, some day after the trauma of the evening fades, to try the recipe again. Instead of Tarragon, I would substitute one of the following:

  • Garlic
  • Rosemary
  • Poultry Seasoning
  • Lemon Pepper Seasoning

What's your favorite roast chicken seasoning? Let me know if you give this recipe a try!