I’ve gotten a lot of questions about how to prepare our meat and instead of just answering individually, we thought we would share your questions and our answers here, for the world (ha!) to see! Here we go…
“Hey Farmer Girl…I got a whole chicken in my Farmer Girl box this month. I’ve never cooked a whole chicken – help!” -Molly
Hi Molly, roasting a whole chicken isn’t that hard…but yes it can be intimidating. Let us walk you through it.
Your bird came to you frozen. You can keep it that way or put it in the fridge to defrost it – it won’t go bad – remember, that all Farmer Girl meat is from a clean system.
You can prepare your bird whole, or break it down into pieces. Here is a great instructional video on how to break down your chicken, if you want to prepare it in individual pieces. (Tip: Don’t throw away the leftover back and neck: Store them in the freezer each time you cut up a chicken until you have enough for stock. Simmer for an hour with water to cover and you’ll have a base for a great soup.)
The easiest way to roast your pasture-raised chicken is roasting it whole. Here are some tips:
1.) Remove the neck if it is still attached (if it is, lucky you! Save this and make some great homemade stock.)
2.) Truss the bird. Trussing is tying up the bird to make it uniformly dense, so it cooks evenly. Thomas Keller’s video below will show you exactly how to do this.
3.) Season bird inside and out, then cook in roasting pan until bird reaches 155 – 160 degrees Fahrenheit. Deborah Kesner, author of Good Meat, suggests an oven temperature of 250 degrees F for about three hours. It will continue to cook after you take it out. Remember, your Farmer Girl chicken is pasture-raised and probably smaller than store-bought birds, so start checking the temp early. The meat will continue to cook while resting outside the oven. Allowing roasts to rest for 10-15 minutes lets the juices redistribute and settle, so they’ll remain in the meat when cutting or carving instead of all dripping out. Carve the meat and serve.
Keller suggest seasoning with just salt and pepper, but another of our customers sent this recipe – she said it was easy and delicious, and perfect for first time cooking whole chicken. This recipe uses a slow cooker, for a great fix it and forget it meal: http://nomnompaleo.com/post/4807547385/slow-cooker-roast-chicken-and-gravy Please let us know if you have any questions and please share recipes and photos with us on Facebook!