2000s Recipes + Menus

Salt-Roasted Chicken

Makes4 servings
  • Active time: 15 min
    Total time: 13 hr (includes overnight salting)
October 2004


  • 1 (3 1/2-pound) chicken
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons fine sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened
  • 3 (1/4-inch-thick) lemon slices


  • an instant-read thermometer


  • Rinse chicken and thoroughly pat dry, then sprinkle inside and out with salt and pepper and set in a shallow dish. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and chill at least 12 and up to 48 hours.
  • Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 500°F.
  • Pat chicken dry, then rub skin with butter and put lemon slices in cavity. Put chicken in a small roasting pan in oven and reduce oven temperature to 425°F. Roast chicken, basting occasionally with pan juices, until thermometer inserted 2 inches into fleshy part of thigh (do not touch bone) registers 170°F, about 50 minutes. Let stand 15 minutes before carving.
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