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A curse on friends who do talk to you in such a way you start feeling inspired about life again.

Today's to-do list began with 'meh, nothing's worth it', and has now morphed into 'actually, quite a lot of things are worht it and maybe life doesn't suck', which just leads to wanting to do everything.

BGW, you are a Bad Person.


Incidentally, I have a chook defrosting in the fridge. I plan to try roasting it tomorrow. Is there anything I should know?


( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 10th, 2012 11:25 am (UTC)
Oh dear, I didn't MEAN to give you a pep talk - I'm generally opposed to them on principle. Sorry!

With chookies - make sure you rummage around in the cavity and remove anything in there before roasting, giblets and such may be in there in a plastic bag.

And your belated Xmas pressie was in the mailbox today - will be packaging it up and putting it in the post in the next couple of days. :-)
Feb. 10th, 2012 11:33 am (UTC)

Feb. 10th, 2012 01:37 pm (UTC)
Hmm... roasting a chicken.

Sprinkling salt onto the skin makes it go crispy.

Putting a little water (or liquid) in the bottom of the pan prevents it drying out too much.

Sticking a halved onion inside the cavity is never a bad thing.

And 20 minutes per pound plus an extra 20 minutes at 180°C is a good cooking time.

That's pretty much what my mum used to do - I tend to get a bit more elaborate, but that's my basic template for a roast and it's very easy.
Feb. 10th, 2012 07:34 pm (UTC)
Remember to eat the "oysters" at the bottom.
Feb. 11th, 2012 12:13 am (UTC)
Chook - 180 deg for 1.5 hours or so depending on size. Put a small knife into the intersection between the thigh and main body and look for clear (not bloody) juices for cooked-ness.

Some people turn the chook - it's a matter of Great Debate. I don't.

2 tbl butter and slices of lemon in his tummy makes him yummy.
Feb. 11th, 2012 01:06 am (UTC)
Now that I have determined from the comments that a "chook" is probably at least a close relative of poultry:

As she says, check inside the innards AND the neck cavidy for mysterious plastic bags of neck and/or innardy bits before roasty, as roasty plastic is not nice. Traditional use for the gooey bits is to chop 'em up in a pan on the stove and use them for basting fluid, or be lazy and give them to the cats because you didn't really want the organ meats anyhow.

I recommend breast side DOWN, which is less pretty but keeps the breast meat juicier and less dry. This also means you needn't really flip him over unless you care what color the bird is. No need to be racist; chicken is chicken. Some folks roast him hotter for a few minutes each side before cooking in order to get him cleverly brown; butter also helps with that. If you don't care about making him colorful, just slap him in best bits down and shove the wings in somewhere. Don't bother with the silliness of bondage and keeping all the bits in; that matters most for large birds and small ovens and nobody really cares anyhow. OH, and I think tying the legs keeps the stuffing in, but I am not an expert on birdy bondage.

If you want a very juicy bird, baste occasionally with your preferred birdy juice (bouillon, stock, wine, vegetable broth, beer, whatever's in the house and a combination of all three). Some liquid in the cavity also works, but some in the pan is good too. If you've got the sort of pan that has a roasting rack, hooray. You can use a basting tube to suck liquid out of hte pan and put it over the bird every 15 minutes or when you think of it, or just use a spoon; if the pan dries out pour more wine in, or keep a vat of bird juice on the stovetop and add more of that lot. (If you have said vat, you can also throw in onion and a garlic and spices or lemon juice or bouquet garni, but you needn't really.) I consider basting to be low effort for high return, but you may not.

Grease also keeps him juicier, so if you've got cooking spray you can hit him with that occasionally, or butter him beforehand. Fancy people stuff herb butter under the skin. I am not this fancy.

Don't stuff a chicken with dry-ish stuffing, imo, as chickens run dry already and the stuffing will steal the tasty juice. Stuff a chicken with flavors, like the already suggested butter lemon or buttered veggies mirepoix or the American classic beer can method.

Especially if you have that roasting rack, you can toss some carrots and potatoes in around him for the last hour or however long you like to roast taters. Or put a separate pan in the oven if you've room in the oven. Most root vegetables - parsnips, whatever you grow there in your funny country - can be done this way and it's easy.

If you already know how to make a pan gravy, a roast pan is ideal for this. Or you can use the rest of the basting fluids if you didn't put any raw meat in them (another reason to give the kidney to the cat). But that might be more work than you want.

When doneish, take out and let it 'rest' for a few minutes before dismembering him; this makes him juicier, if I recall properly, and gives you time to fuss with the potatoes and carrots or sit down for a bit or find the knives.

Of course by now you've probably already got dinner on, but have some ideas for the future.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )


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