My mom's good friend brought this roast chicken to her when she had my little brother. Now, 18 years later, I made it for my best friend, Erica who just returned home after having her second baby girl, Claire Dyer! I know roasting a whole chicken can sound intimidating...it did to me until my mom and I made this together the a few weeks ago. The chicken was so juicy it tasted like butter (although I didn't add a drop of oil to the chicken)! I also made 2 chickens at the ranch last weekend and used the bones to make a chicken stock...even easier than roasting the chicken!
-1 whole chicken (roaster or fryer)
-2 whole lemons
The last few times I've made this I doubled the recipe, using 2 chickens. If your going to the work, might as well make extra! The roasted chicken is great on salads, sandwiches, soups, quesadillas and enchiladas. You name it. First, remove the gizzards and nasty stuff from the inside of the chicken and rinse thoroughly. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
Place the chicken on a roasting rack under a pan or just rimmed baking sheet. Make sure to spray whichever you are using with cooking spray so you can turn the chicken easily. Slice the lemons in half and rub all over the outside and inside of the chickens.
Stuff the squeezed lemon halves in the chicken cavity.
Place the chicken bottom-side up (breast-side down) so once you turn the chicken and finish roasting the breasts will be up and brown. Evenly sprinkle the paprika, seasoning salt and garlic salt. I was very liberal with my application, but it's up to you how much you use.
Place the chicken in the oven at 350 for 45 minutes. Remove and turn the chicken. Season the other side with salts and roast for another 30 minutes (I did another 45 minutes for 2 chickens). Remove and let cool for 15-20 minutes before slicing.
Slice (or tear) the chick off the bone. I swear I ate half the chicken as I did this, just like a Thanksgiving turkey! Serve hot with potatoes or really any side dishes. If you want to make chicken stock, use the bones with a few celery sticks, a few carrots, halved onions, and bunch of parsley in a large pot. Cover with water and season liberally with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil then simmer for 4 hours, skimming off fat. Strain veggies and bones for a rich, clear chicken broth!
The picture below is the chicken I roasted for Erica and her husband, Zach.