SMOKE BREAK: Beards on a budget
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 60-90 minutes
Preheat oven to 375°
Whole roasting chicken
1 lemon, washed and quartered
Sprigs of fresh herbs – optional, suggest thyme, sage, and/or rosemary
Beard-B-Q Rub of your choice
Salt and pepper
1 bunch carrots – sliced (may substitute frozen or canned, drain and rinse if canned)
1 onion, chopped – any variety works
4 – 8 cloves of garlic
1 bag frozen Brussels sprouts (may substitute fresh if in season, but frozen works great)
¼- ½ teaspoon sage (season to taste)
2-3 tablespoons butter (may substitute olive oil if necessary)
Grease your roasting pan – a cast iron skillet also works nicely if you’ve got one handy. Add carrots, onions, garlic, and Brussels
sprouts around the edge of the pan, leave a hole for your chicken. Sprinkle the veggies with sage, salt, and pepper to taste. If desired, add a couple pats of butter or a drizzle of olive oil, but the chicken will add fat and flavor, so go lightly.
Prepare chicken: salt and pepper the cavity, stuff quartered lemon in cavity, if using sprigs of fresh herbs add them as well. Place the bird breast side up the pan, amid the ring of veggies. Top the chicken with pats of butter, or drizzle with olive oil – this helps the skin get a nice, golden crispiness.
Sprinkle liberally with your favorite Beard-B-Q Rub.
Place pan in oven and cook for 60-75 minutes, then bump up the oven’s temperature to 425° F until the chicken measures done.
Let it rest before carving. Set aside a breast or thigh meat for another meal before serving, because this will be gone fast. This is where making two at a time comes in handy, because you can plan meals ahead and maximize your results in stretching out the number of meals that follow this effort.
Next, use the carcass to make broth. Remove the lemon wedges from the carcass, and, using your hands, pick the meat clean from the bones before you place them in the bottom of a large stock pot.
This is more method than recipe because you want to use what’s on hand. It’s the best way to use up veggies that are ready to spoil. You can use almost anything – trial and error are the best teacher, peppers aren’t recommended as they’re very strong and take over the flavor. But spinach, carrots, onions, garlic, parsnips, zucchini, celery, etc…they play nice and contribute to the taste and nutrition involved. Some people swear you should break the bones first and roast the carcass again to get more of the marrow from the bone, others say whatever works. It’s up to you how intense you want to get and the time you’ve got to invest in the process.
In the stock pot, pour water over the goodies until it’s all covered, then toss in your favorite spices, and don’t forget a bay leaf or two, plenty of garlic, lots of salt and pepper. Tip, a splash of apple cider vinegar, and a touch of honey give a fuller flavor. Allow to simmer for hours, stirring occasionally, as the broth develops. When you’re satisfied with the taste, strain the broth and refrigerate until you use it. Bonus, refrigerating before using means you can strain off some of the fat as it will coagulate in the cold temps.
In our recipe section you’ll find delicious recipes to use the broth and leftover chicken.
Times of scarcity and stress just means we need to be more mindful of the waste and process. We, here at Beard-BQ, are here to help you get the most bang from your buck and return on your efforts by helping you stretch it out and keep meals delicious. The fun is up to you. Enjoy the process and time well-spent with family.