I decided to try cooking the chicken at a high heat for a shorter than normal time, then cover it and leave it in the oven at a low temp for the rest of the afternoon (similar to a crock pot). I left for the afternoon unsure if this brilliant idea would result in a terribly burned chicken or a chicken that would give us salmonella poisoning. Brilliance can be like that.
I was thrilled with the result. The skin was beautifully browned and the meat was so moist and tender it was falling off of the bones. It reminded me of one of those yummy little rotisserie chickens.
When we got home, I was able to simply pull the meat off of the bones and serve it. Since I am not great at chicken carving, this was another bonus. My husband is not a big chicken fan, but even he noticed how moist and tasty this was. He has requested that I use this cooking method from now on.
This picture is a bit odd, but I wanted to try to show all the yummy brownness and moistness.
Rotisserie Style Chicken
1 roasting chicken (about 5 pounds)
2 tablespoons butter at room temperature
kosher salt and ground pepper
1 lemon cut in eighths
1 small bunch of thyme
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Rinse the chicken and pat dry. Rub the butter into the chicken skin and then liberally sprinkle the inside and outside with salt and pepper. Stuff the cavity with lemon and thyme.
Place the chicken in a large dutch oven and roast, uncovered, at 400 degrees for 1 hour and 15 minutes.
Reduce the heat to 250 degrees, place a cover on the pan and cook for another 2 to 3 hours.
Pull the meat from bones and serve.