Roasted Chicken with Root Vegetables
How Daniel Boulud Brines His Iconic Roast Chicken
On an episode of “The Rachael Ray Show,” Daniel Boulud explained that he brines his iconic roast chicken by starting with water infused with thyme, bay leaf, and garlic.
After straining the solids from the water, Boulud adds kosher salt and honey. He then warms it until the salt is dissolved, saying this “creates a brine that is almost like seawater.”
Boulud then adds more water to the mixture, cools it completely, and places a whole roasted chicken in the brine for 45 minutes in the refrigerator.
He removes the bird from the brine and lets it dry uncovered in the fridge overnight. The next day, he stuffs the chicken with garlic, herbs, and lemon, and butters and roasts it.
Once the roasting pan has accumulated some melted chicken fat in the bottom, Boulud takes a tied bundle of herbs, dips it in the drippings, and bastes the chicken as it cooks.
When the chicken is done cooking, he lets the meat sit for 20 to 30 minutes before he cuts into the bird. This ensures it stays moist and the heat distributes evenly throughout.
Boulud’s brined, roasted chicken is extremely juicy, since the salt water causes the meat to retain its moisture as the honey creates a golden-brown skin through caramelization.