Roast Chicken in Oven | The Best Anglo Indian Chicken Roast

As children, our Christmas wasn't Christmas without Santa Claus. And neither was it Christmas without a golden brown, oven roasted whole chicken with stuffing gracing our table for Christmas lunch.

Anglo Indian Roast Chicken and Stuffing, roast chicken and stuffing, roast chicken whole, roast chicken in oven

Growing up in India, Christmas lunch was very special. When we were little, our job (which we took very seriously) was to set the table and stay out of our cook's way. Out came the best linens, crockery, cut glass and candlesticks. With Jim Reeves' Christmas carols playing in the background, we'd artistically fold Christmas napkins and ring them with the special silver napkin rings reserved for Christmas. And when the food was brought to the table, I kid you not, I would hear our table sigh and creak with the weight of it all- ball currycoconut rice, chops, salt beef, roast pork, salted tongue were some of the delicacies that were served up that special afternoon. But, for us kids, the piece de resistance was the Anglo Indian Chicken Roast and Stuffing, brought last and placed in prime position in the center of the table.

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We'd take great delight in watching the chicken being carved at the table. Of course, my brother and I had to have a leg each. Luckily the bird had two legs and there only two of us children in the house. And as the meal progressed and we got down to the bones, the ceremonial pulling of the wishbone would take place with much chaos and cacophony at the table.

Anglo Indian Roast Chicken and Stuffing, Christmas

We are all grown up now. But the tradition of roast chicken and stuffing still continues in our homes. Below is my recipe for the best Anglo Indian Chicken Roast recipe for a great looking bird with the crispiest skin, the most flavorful, tender and juicy breast and the absolute best thighs and legs to die for. 

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And most important, I share my secret to making a roast chicken that is beautifully carveable at the table. Carving a roast chicken at the table can be a bit tricky if the bird is not cooked just right. The breast meat and skin can fall apart making the dish look like a pile of royal mess. 

Look at how beautifully this chicken breast cut. The crispy skin remains intact without sliding off and falling apart.

Chicken Roast breast, anglo indian chicken roast, stuffing


And when a portion of the chicken breast meat is plated, each portion has the golden crispy skin clinging to it, perfectly intact.  Take a look below.

Chicken Roast breast, anglo indian chicken roast, stuffing




My Secrets to the Best Roast Chicken in Oven


Roasting a chicken whole in the oven is a very simple process. I make roast chicken for special occasions like Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas but also on regular days for an easy dinner.

Roasting a whole chicken is nothing but a few prep steps and then popping it in the oven and letting the oven works its magic. Don't be daunted. 

Just follow the 3 secrets below for a perfectly roasted and flavorful chicken.

1. Dry Brine
For a succulent, flavorful, tender and juicy chicken, marinade the chicken for 24-72 hours with the dry brine mixture rubbed directly onto the flesh, under the skin.

2. Air Dry
The secret for a roast chicken with a real crispy skin is dry brining and air drying the chicken.

3. Baste 
And for a roast chicken with a richgolden brown skin, basting the chicken regularly during the baking process is key.

 

1. Dry Brine for a Flavorful Chicken Roast

A dry brine is a mixture of dry spices that are rubbed under the skin of the chicken and onto the flesh. In other words, the dry brine is the marinade or the seasoning. No water is used in the dry brine.

For this Anglo Indian spiced chicken, I season the chicken with a combination of Indian spices- cinnamon powder, clove powder, coarsely crushed pepper corns and dried red chilies
Note: Do not use garam masala powder, the flavor is different.

Oil, ginger garlic paste, Worcestershire sauce and lime juice lend a bit of moisture to the dry spices that help the spices cling to and penetrate the chicken better. 

Most important is a good deal of coarse Kosher salt to flavor the chicken. The salt also helps desiccate the chicken during the air-drying process.

Important: 

1. Dry the chicken thoroughly with paper towels before rubbing the spices on the chicken.
2. Rub the dry brine under the chicken skin and onto the flesh.
-     Carefully lift the skin away from the meat by sliding your fingers under and rub 3/4 of the dry brine spice mixture under the skin of the chicken and onto the flesh of the chicken.
-     Rub the the remaining 1/4  portion of the dry brine spice mixture into the cavity.

Whole raw chicken, raw chicken with skin, dry brine, marinade, Spicy indian roast
Chicken after the dry brine mixture has been applied under the skin and in the cavity.



2. Air Dry for a Chicken Roast with Crispy Skin

Air drying the chicken in the refrigerator for 24 - 72 hours dries the skin out and makes the skin extra crispy during the baking process.

I leave the chicken on its back, uncovered in the refrigerator, in a pan placed on a slight tilt and a paper towel in the corner of the pan to absorb the liquids released from the chicken.

Whole raw chicken, raw chicken with skin, air dry, Spicy indian roast
Chicken 72 hours after it has air dried in the refrigerator.


3. Baste Chicken for a Golden Brown Color

Basting the chicken with its own fat and juices released during the baking process is key to getting a golden roast chicken. Use a heat proof bristle brush for basting. A plastic brush will melt with the heat.

-After the initial 45 minutes of baking (or once the chicken starts releasing it's juices), start basting the chicken every 15 minutes until the skin develops a rich golden, brown color.

- If the skin starts browning too much during roasting, tent it loosely with foil.

Roast chicken in oven, chicken roast anglo indian style, trussed chicken roast
Roast chicken in oven. Basting the chicken during baking gives it a golden brown color.


How to Truss Chicken

Before roasting the chicken, it's important to truss it. Trussing ensures that the chicken cooks evenly, the wings and legs don't burn  and that the breast does not dry out.

I always turn to Jaques Pepin's trussing demonstration video for a quick refresher. Plus, anything in a French accent makes the job so much  more pleasant! 



Recipe for Chicken Roast Anglo Indian Style


Ingredients:

5-6 lb. whole chicken with skin


Marinade/ Dry brine:

☐ 2 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
☐ 2 teaspoons pepper corns (coarsely crushed)
☐ 1 tablespoon ginger garlic paste
☐ 2 dry round red chilies crushed or 1/2 teaspoon dry chili flakes
☐ 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon powder
☐ 1/2 teaspoon clove powder
☐ 1 tablespoon lemon juice
☐ 2 tablespoons oil
☐ 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce


Step-by-Step Instructions:


Step 1: Prepare the dry brine spice mixture

Mix all the ingredients for the dry brine in a small bowl and set aside.


Step 2: Dry brine chicken

- Dry chicken completely inside and outside with paper towels. It's important the chicken is completely dry before starting to rub the spice mixture onto the chicken.

- Carefully lift the skin away from the meat by sliding your fingers under and rub 3/4 of the dry brine spice mixture under the skin of the chicken and onto the flesh of the chicken.
- Rub the the remaining 1/4  portion of the dry brine spice mixture into the cavity.

- To get under the skin on the drumsticks, lift the skin off the back of the chicken and slide your fingers onto the legs of the chicken.

- It's not required to rub any of the spice mixture on the skin. Some of it will get on the skin anyway as you handle the chicken.


Step 3: Air Dry chicken

Place the chicken on it's back on a baking tray and pop it into the fridge- uncovered to dry out.(Air dry). For best results leave for 24-72 hours in the refrigerator.

Liquid will start to come out of the chicken as it salts. So, I like to keep the tray on a slight tilt in the refrigerator with a piece of kitchen towel at one end of the tray to absorb all the liquid that is released.



Step 4: Truss chicken

Truss chicken with kitchen string.

After trussing the chicken, rub the outside of the chicken with 1 tablespoon of oil and sprinkle with kosher salt and cracked/crushed pepper corns.

Step 5: Roast

-To roast: Move the rack to the lower 1/3 of the oven. And preheat the oven to 375° F.
- Roast chicken breast side up for 1 hour at 375°F. Then turn oven to 425°F and roast for 20-25 minutes until the internal temperature reaches 160°F or the juices run clear when pierced.
-After the initial 45 minutes of baking (or once the chicken starts releasing it's juices), start basting the chicken every 15 minutes until the skin develops a rich golden, brown color.
- If the skin starts browning too much during roasting, tent it loosely with foil.

Step 6: Remove and let rest

- Once you remove the chicken from the oven, let it rest for 10-15 minutes before removing the string and carving it.
- While the chicken is resting, this would be a good time to prepare the gravy with the drippings from the baking pan.


GRAVY RECIPE FOR ROAST CHICKEN

Roast chicken must be served with oodles of rich, tasty gravy to drizzle over the chicken pieces and the stuffing.

Ingredients:

☐ 2 tablespoons corn starch dissolved in 1/4 cup cold water
☐ 2 tablespoons pan drippings
☐ 2 cups water
☐ Salt/pepper (if required for additional seasoning)

Step-by-Step Instructions:

Remove all but 2 tablespoons of dripping from pan. Over medium heat, stir in 2 cups of water. With a wooden spoon, mix well incorporating all the browned bits and pan drippings into the liquid.

Pour in the cornflour liquid mixture into the pan. Simmer on medium heat until the gravy thickens. Season to taste if required. 

Pour into gravy dish and serve hot along with the roast chicken and stuffing.


Check back for my recipe for stuffing for roast chicken which is a must side with roast chicken.

Or click on the "Anglo Indian" label below to explore my other Anglo Indian recipes.

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