Updated: Jan 8, 2020
THOMAS KELLER'S [3-INGREDIENT] ROASTED CHICKEN
YIELD: Makes 4-5 servings
1 whole (5 to 6 pound) chicken
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon thyme leaves, optional
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Arrange oven rack on bottom third.
Rinse chicken then dry very well with paper towels. The less water, the less steam. The less steam, the drier the heat and crisper the chicken!
Place chicken in a large roasting pan (with or without a wire rack underneath). Truss the bird, tying the legs together and close to the body of the chicken. (This helps the chicken cook evenly and results in a more beautiful roasted bird.)
Sprinkle all over with kosher salt (about 1 Tablespoon). Season to taste with pepper.
Roast for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, depending on size*. Do not baste or add butter or oil. (Keller’s theory is that this creates steam, which inhibits the crispness and tenderness of the chicken). If chicken is browning too quickly, cover loosely with aluminum foil.
To measure temperature, place a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh without touching the bone. It should reach 165 degrees F.
Remove chicken from oven and baste with pan juices. Sprinkle with fresh thyme, if desired. Let rest for at least 10 minutes before carving.
The 5-pound chicken pictured was done after 1 hour, 30 minutes of roasting, though your results may vary.