Spicy Roast Chicken and Root Vegetables

17 Nov

I am well aware that I have a bit of a problem with roast chicken.  I love it.  I love the smell of it, the taste of it, the texture of it, the copious leftovers, and the bones to throw in a large pot with some vegetables for beautiful, flavorful, gelatinous, stock.  This is a particularly satisfying version, with a really pronounced but pleasant spice.  The array of root vegetables picked up a hint of the spice while slowly being basted in the juices of the chicken.  Yum!

Spicy Roast Chicken and Root Vegetables

Spicy Brine:

1 4 lb. whole fryer

2-3 cups water per lb. of chicken

1/2 cup kosher salt per lb. of chicken

1/2 cup white sugar per lb. of chicken

1 small red onion halved

1 tangerine, quartered

1 apple, quartered

4 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled

2 tbs. whole black pepper corns

1 tbs. chili powder

1 tbs. crushed red pepper flakes

1 tbs. Old Bay seasoning

1 tbs. garlic hot sauce

2 tsp. paprika

2 bay leaves

Spicy Rub:

1 tsp. paprika

1 tsp. chili powder

1 tsp. Old Bay seasoning

1 tsp. garlic powder

Freshly cracked black pepper

To begin, in a medium or large saucepan heat water.  A little at a time, add kosher salt and sugar while whisking until dissolved.  It may be necessary to add more water to the saucepan in order to dissolve all of the salt and sugar.  Once the salt and sugar are dissolved, transfer the water to a container large enough to hold the brining solution and chicken.  This can be done in a large ziplock bag, though I prefer to use a large stock pot.

Add all other brine ingredients and allow brining solution to cool to room temperature, placing solution in refrigerator for 15-20 minutes or adding more water or ice if necessary.  Once the solution is room temperature or cool to the touch, add the chicken to the solution.  Place the chicken in the refrigerator and let soak in brining solution about one hour per pound (round up to the nearest hour).

Remove chicken from brining solution by straining through a colander.  Make sure you save all brining ingredients.  Dress the chicken with as much onion, apple, and tangerine as possible.

Mix together ingredients for the spicy rub.  Rub all over the chicken, including underneath the skin and inside the cavity.

Allow the chicken to rest overnight, at least 18 hours.  This allows most of the moisture to evaporate from the skin of the chicken, which will result in a crispier skin (my favorite part!).

Spicy Roasted Chicken and Root Vegetables:

Brined and dry-rubbed spicy chicken, from above

3-4 small potatoes, halved

5-6 small turnips, ends trimmed and peeled

1 large radish, ends trimmed, halved

2 small onions, halved and peeled

Preheat oven to 475°.

In a deep roasting pan with fitted lid, place potatoes, onion, tomato, and zucchini.  Toss with 1 tbs. of the olive oil.  Season with freshly cracked black pepper.

Remove chicken from refrigerator and place top of the vegetables in the roasting pan.  Rub remaining tbs. olive oil over the chicken and season with garlic powder, dried parsley, and freshly cracked black pepper.  Feel free to season the vegetables with some of the seasonings as well.

Place chicken in preheated oven on center rack.  Roast at 475° for 15 minutes or until skin is light golden brown.  After 15 minutes, reduce heat to 350°.  Roast chicken roughly 20 minutes per pound (rounding up to nearest pound), or until meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the chicken’s thigh reads 165º.   Baste both the chicken and vegetables occasionally.  For last 30 minutes of cooking, place lid on the roasting pan.

When fully cooked, remove chicken from oven keep covered.  Rest 15-20 minutes, which will allow juices to redistribute and result in a tender, juicy bird.

One Response to “Spicy Roast Chicken and Root Vegetables”


  1. Sopa de Lima (Mexican Lime Soup) « Kelseyincleveland's Blog - November 18, 2011

    […] and I’m a sucker for any variety of chicken soup.  I had some leftover roast chicken from my spicy roast chicken and couple of days back and thought this might be an easy way to use it up.  In order to extract […]

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