Roasted chicken: The Stand

Goopy is the goal. I know, it’s gross, but the chicken turns out really well, I promise!

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Okay, vegetarians, because I love you (hell, I WAS you), I’m gonna put the not-gross photo first, along with a warning: The rest of the photos in this post are, well, kinda gross, and not just because they show my messy kitchen. You probably won’t like them. My feelings won’t be hurt if you move on to something else—say, a list of all our vegetarian dishes. So here you go, the least offensive of the photos to come: The Stand

stand

I don’t remember when my mom started using The Stand, but I think it was some time in my early teens. I know it was after we moved to California when I was almost twelve, and that she didn’t use The Stand before then. I also don’t think I’ve seen her roast a chicken without The Stand in at least twenty years. The Stand is just the way mom does chicken now. She gets the gadgets for a dollar apiece at yard sales, so she buys new ones all the time, and gives them to me from time to time, so the one in that picture’s only been used once, I think.

The other weird thing about The Stand is really the part that makes it kind of gross, but bear with me here, please. All will be illuminated.

Here’s a photo of a fresh chicken on the stand. Normal enough so far, right?

chicken

And here’s the weird, gross part. I feel a deep urge to promise you it will all be okay. Mom’s method of cooking chicken on The Stand is to put the chicken on The Stand, then slather it with whichever salad dressing is in the refrigerator needing to be used up. Maybe the dressing is near its date, or maybe it’s just a flavor people don’t like that much. Either way, salad dressing is the first choice. If there’s no salad dressing in her fridge, a rare occurrence, she’ll use anything — salsa, preserves, anything goopy. Because I’m afraid “goopy” is the goal. See?

goopy

Yes, this looks gross. The only way it could be grosser is if I told you which dressing it is. And really, I understand why someone would hate the idea of smearing old salad dressing on a chicken. But it works; it really does. The chicken comes out like this, when you roast it at 350F until the juices run clear, around an hour or so:

roasted

If your family is like my kid, they will compliment you on your “barbecue sauce” every single time, and they don’t have to be any the wiser. Unless you do something silly like post it on a public blog, of course, but who would be that dumb?

I couldn’t get a picture that would really show the juiciness to its best advantage, but I tried—even the breast comes out moist, tender, and flavorful, and that’s saying a lot when you’re me, really not a fan of poultry.

breast

Give it a try. If you have to, close your eyes during the goopy part.

leg

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Author: Serene

I run The Mom Food Project, which was born out of love for my mom and a desire to preserve the recipes of my childhood, which didn't actually exist in written form until I quizzed my mom and wrote the recipes down.

8 thoughts on “Roasted chicken: The Stand”

  1. Heck, your mom’s version of roast chicken isn’t that far removed from the “foodie” version I make, which involves shoving compound butter under the skin (you want gross? I’ll show you gross!) and then slathering the surface with olive oil. It’s all about making the fatty skin even more fatty – which, against all reason, makes the finished product turn out *less* fatty, because it raises the temperature at the skin, melting the chicken fat (most of which melts away and drains off, thanks to your stand and my roasting rack) and searing the skin to seal the juices inside. The result: Crispy-on-the-outside, juicy-on-the-inside, flavorful chicken!

  2. Wow I would never have thought to do this. Awesome.
    Have to find one of those stands too!
    So if I was slather the chicken with vinagrette would it have the same effect? I will have to try

    1. Right, exactly. Vinaigrette, or anything really that has a little oil and a little tang to it, or second choice is something sweet, like apricot preserves, and sometimes I mix that with the last bit of mustard from a jar, too.

  3. We marinate our chicken for grilling in Italian salad dressing all the time–works like a charm!

    Haven’t ever used an emulsified,mayo-ish dressing but (like most food things) when you think about the component parts (oil, eggs, etc) and that we make things like chicken salad with mayo or other dressing or we have salad with grilled chicken and an emulsified dressing on it… it doesn’t sound all that strange.

    1. Yeah, that’s kind of the mental space I have to get into before doing it. ;-)

      I was talking to my mom about it and she was laughing that something she did because she had food to use up (and a limited budget) has turned into her standard way of doing things, even now that she has enough money to do it any way she wants.

  4. I totally love your description and pics! I never thought about putting dressing on a chicken . . . hmmm. I wonder if it would work in the crock pot? We do have one of those beer can chicken things (kind of like the stand, although I’m sure they charge more for it by calling it “beer can chicken”)

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