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Spiced Roast Chicken

While a whole roast chicken is a wonderful thing, it does involve post-cooking cutting it up, which can be a little daunting. Buying chicken already cut into parts allows you to pick the pieces or assortment of pieces your family likes, takes less cooking time, and cuts out that pesky carving step. Yet you still get the wonderful qualities of roasting: the juiciness, the moistness, the tenderness, the flavor. This recipe may call for a higher heat than you usually use, but that’s how to get that amazing crispy skin (which you can pull off, if you wish, you model of self-restraint you, but do it after the chicken is cooked). You’ll need to buy skin-on, bone-in chicken; that’s the key. Other than that, thighs, breasts, drumsticks, even whole legs or chicken halves are fair game (ha! I didn’t even see that one coming). You can rub the chicken with any of the rubs a day ahead; this allows the seasonings to permeate the meat.

What the Kids Can Do Note: They can help measure the ingredients for any of the rubs, and if your kids aren’t grossed out by the prospect, they can rub the rubs onto the chicken. Follow this by a lengthy hand washing in warm, soapy water (and a reminder not to stick their hands in their mouths until after the soapy water bit).–Katie Workman

LC Dinner on the Double, er, Triple Note

Nothing against a whole roast chicken, although as Katie Workman explains above, roasting these here chicken parts is slightly quicker and, arguably, a little easier. In addition being dinner on the double, it’s also eminently customizable, enabling you to draw on any–or all–of these spice rubs, even going so far as to reach for each family member’s favorite for their portion. Dinner on the triple, actually. Seeing as how the rubs keep almost indefinitely, you may as well mix up a big batch of each and keep them within weeknight reach.

Spiced Roast Chicken Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 15 M
  • 1 H
  • Serves 4

Ingredients

  • For the spiced Cajun rub
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons sweet paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon kosher or coarse salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • For the warm spice rub
  • 2 tablespoons sweet paprika
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon kosher or coarse salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • For the spiced curry rub
  • 4 teaspoons curry powder
  • 4 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher or coarse salt
  • For the chicken
  • 1 whole (about 4 pounds) chicken, cut into 8 pieces, or about 4 pounds skin-on, bone-in chicken parts
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for the baking sheet (optional)
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper (optional)

Directions

  • Make a rub
  • 1. Combine all the ingredients for the rub of your choice in a small bowl.
  • Make the chicken
  • 2. Preheat the oven to 425°F (218°C) and adjust the oven rack to the lower third of the oven. Lightly coat a large rimmed baking sheet with olive oil.
  • 3. Place the chicken in a large bowl, drizzle with the olive oil, and rub each piece, using your hands to ensure each piece is coated evenly. Sprinkle the chicken with the salt and pepper, if desired, or a rub and again rub with your hands to coat each piece evenly. (You can cover and refrigerate the chicken pieces for up to 24 hours.) Arrange the chicken pieces on the baking sheet, skin side up, spacing them an inch or so apart.
  • 4. Roast the chicken until cooked through and the juices run clear when you cut into a piece with the tip of a sharp knife, 35 to 50 minutes, depending on the thickness of the pieces. Dark meat will take longer to cook than white meat. If you want to test the chicken for doneness using an instant-read thermometer, an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) for both chicken breasts and dark meat is recommended. Remember, though, that the chicken will continue to cook slightly more after it is removed from the oven, particularly if it sits on the baking sheet. If the skin needs more crisping to be to your liking, simply run the chicken under the broiler for a few minutes. Let the chicken rest for at least 5 minutes before serving so the juices can regroup. The chicken is quite nice whether served hot, warm, or cold.
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