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slow cooking roast chicken

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Since our Sous Vide discussion I decided to have an attempt at a slow cooked roast chook.

First part was pretty easy, defrost in the fridge for a day then give it a clean and wash out with vinegar. The supermarket chicken smelt OK but there was a bit of bruising on the bird breast and what was left of the neck.

I then made some brine 60grams per litre of water  and slid the chicken in and back in the fridge for 12 hours (that turned into 30 hours because I was away on a job)

 

Got home very late, pulled the chicken out of the brine, into a cast iron baking dish with a lid, into the oven set at something that looked like it would give me 75 degrees C set the timer for 4 hours and crashed into bed.

 

When I clambered out of bed, bleary eyed at 7-ish the oven had been off for about an hour, I drained the fat and juice out of the pan, smeared the chicken with butter, got the oven temperature up to around 230 C then shoved it back in the oven and watched as it browned, I pulled it out after 13 minutes as some fat dripped into the pan and started to smoke.

 

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Observations

- I should have trimmed the wing tips before browning as they burned very quickly

- It would have been better if the bird was on a rack for the slow cooking, I forgot.

- cheap thermometer and not preheating the oven longer meant the temp must have been a little high or got higher during the night, the meat looked overdone and there was more fluid in the pan than I thought there should be.

- using a probe thermometer and checking the internal temperature would be better than setting a timer for 4 hours and hoping. Next time

- I had the oven shelf set much too low, the bottom of the pan was too close to the element.

 

taste test

surprisingly moist and almost juicy, plenty of natural chicken flavour, drumstick was overdone but still tasty. The big surprise for me is that the breast meat is really fatty, a lot more than I like. I cooked an identical chicken hotter and faster last week and it was dry, no taste at all and no fat in the meat. This one is a vast improvement, the fact that it has good flavour with no stuffing or seasonings is remarkable.

 

Conclusions

I think I could get a better result with a much bigger and leaner bird, these are 1.5 Kg, it was probably cooked after 2.5 hours and should have come out of the oven then.

I am very happy with the result and with a few tweaks I will definitely have another go.

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