There’s something so classic about a roast chicken. It may be the most delicious but humble meal. A couple of years ago, I went to a goodbye party at my friend’s Joyce and Bobby’s house. They served the most delicious roast chicken I think I’ve ever had (sorry Mom!). To this day, my friend Andrew still asks while passing their street if I think they’re roasting a chicken at that moment. So while I used to think a roast chicken was only fitting for a Sunday supper, Joyce and Bobby proved that a roast chicken can be equally as impressing as any other fancied-up recipe.
I served this version of a roast chicken for a Halloween dinner party. This recipe steps it up a notch by brining the birds over night in a mixture of salty water, rosemary and citrus. Plus the addition of spicy sausages and roasted sweet shallots. With some simple sides, it was an easy classic dinner fit for almost any crowd.
** Sadly, I don’t have a photo of this delicious bird so my Fall perch with wine and cheese will have to do.
Roast Chickens And Sausages For A Crowd, Bon Appetit MAGAZINE
- ½ cup kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons freshly cracked black pepper
- 2 bay leaves
- 10 sprigs rosemary, divided
- 1 orange, halved
- 2 3½–4-pound chickens
- 1 large apple, quartered
- 1 large onion, unpeeled, quartered
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 2 pounds sausages (such as andouille) or tasso
- 6 large shallots, unpeeled, halved
Bring salt, pepper, bay leaves, 4 rosemary sprigs, and 10 cups water to a boil in a large pot. Squeeze juice from orange halves into pot, add orange halves, and stir to combine. Let brine cool.
Place each chicken in a large resealable plastic bag and divide brine between bags; seal. Chill chickens 12–24 hours.
Preheat oven to 425°. Remove chickens from brine and pat dry; discard brine. Scatter remaining 6 rosemary sprigs in a large roasting pan. Place chickens on top of rosemary sprigs and divide apple and onion between cavities of each bird. Brush chickens with melted butter and arrange sausages and shallots around each chicken.
Pour ½ cup water into pan and roast chickens, turning occasionally so they brown evenly, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of thigh registers 165°, 50–60 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes.
Carve chickens and slice sausages; transfer to a platter. Arrange shallots alongside, then pour any pan juices over.