In kitchens with professional-quality stoves and hot ovens, it is rarely necessary to brown the chicken on top of the stove before roasting. However, the smaller the bird being roasted, the more likely will be the necessity for prebrowning; by the time a quail browns in the oven, it will have dried out and overcooked. Chicken can go either way. The oven should be piping-hot so as to brown the chicken before it ends up completely cooked. If the oven isn’t hot enough, the chicken should be browned on the stove before roasting.
Older recipes suggest covering the breast of a roast chicken with a sheet of fatback (barding) for the first stage of roasting so the thighs and breasts will be done at the same time. This is still a good idea but a bit of a nuisance when sheets of fatback are not on hand. An easy alternative is to double up a small sheet of aluminum foil and place it over the breast, leaving the thighs exposed, while the chicken is roasting. The foil is removed at least 30 minutes before the end of roasting to allow the breast to brown.
|carrots, peeled, cut into 3-inch (7-cm) lengths|
|enough meat trimmings or chicken bones to cover roasting pan (optional)|
|chicken stock (brown chicken stock or white chicken stock) or water|
|salt and pepper||to taste||to taste|
Copyright © 2017 by James Peterson. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.