Simplest roast chicken

Course : Chicken
Serves: 8
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Ingredients:

5 pounds chicken -- wing tips removed
1 medium lemon -- halved
4 cloves garlic
4 tablespoons margarine -- unsalted
1 teaspoon salt -- to taste
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper -- to taste
1 cup basic chicken stock,water, fruit juice, wine, or canned chicken stock for deglazing
 

Preparation / Directions:

Place rack on second level from bottom of oven. Heat oven to 500°. Remove the fat from the tail and crop end of the chicken. Freeze the neck and giblets for basic chicken stock. Reserve chicken livers for another time. Stuff the cavity of the chicken with the lemon, garlic, and butter. Season the cavity and skin with salt and pepper. Place the chicken in a 12x8x1 1/2 inch roasting pan breast side up. Put in the oven legs first and roast 50 to 60 minutes, or until the juices run clear. After the first 10 minutes, move the chicken with a wooden spatula to keep it from sticking. Remove the chicken to a platter by placing a large wooden spoon into the tail end and balancing the chicken with kitchen spoon pressed against the crop end. As you lift the chicken, tilt it over the roasting pan so that all the juices run oujt and into the pan. Pour off or spoon out excess fat from the roasting pan and put the roasting pan on top of the stove. Add the stock or other liquid and bring the contents of the pan to a boil, while scraping the bottom vigorously with a wooden spoon. Let reduce by half. Serve with sauce over the chicken or, for crisp skin, in a sauceboat.


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