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Jonathan Waxman’s Roast Chicken

A portion of Jonathan Waxman's roast chicken topped with salsa verde on a white plate with a knife on the side.
This recipe has been adapted for home cooks. At Barbuto, we roast our chickens in a wood-fired oven, basting often. This technique gets you pretty close to what we serve.
Jonathan Waxman

Prep 30 mins
Cook 30 mins
Total 1 hr 30 mins
4 servings
693 kcal


For the roasted chicken

  • One (3 1/2-pound) whole chicken preferably fresh, spatchcocked
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

For the salsa verde

  • 1/4 cup capers in salt
  • 4 salt-cured anchovies rinsed and deboned
  • 3 cloves garlic peeled
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/2 cup chopped arugula
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh tarragon
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh sage
  • 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt


Make the roasted chicken

  • Preheat the oven to 450°F (230°C).
  • Pat the chicken completely dry with paper towels.
  • Place the chicken, breast side down, on a cutting board. Using a heavy chef ’s knife, cut out the breastbone and snip off the wingtips. Season the two halves with salt and pepper.
  • Slick a roasting pan or cast-iron skillet with 2 tablespoons oil. Place the chicken halves, skin side up, in the roasting pan and drizzle with the remaining oil. Roast the chicken until cooked through and the internal temperature is 165°F (74°C), basting every 10 minutes, 30 to 35 minutes. If it's not browning well, turn it over after 15 minutes, and then return it to skin side up for the last 5 minutes.
  • Place the chicken halves on a platter, and drain excess fat from the roasting pan. Let rest for at least 30 minutes.

Make the salsa verde

  • While the bird is roasting, soak the capers in cold water for 1 hour, then drain.
  • Soak the anchovies in cold water for 15 minutes, then pat dry.
  • Using a mortar and pestle or small food processor, smash together the capers, anchovies, and garlic until smooth, then dump into a large bowl.
  • Add all the herbs and oil. Season with salt. It should be chunky, not oily.


  • When ready to serve, return the bird to the roasting pan and place back in the oven for 5 to 8 minutes to warm through. Remove and cut the bird into serving pieces. Cut each breast in half and cut the thighs from the legs. Serve with the salsa verde, if desired.