Between you and me, putting a salted bird in a heavy-duty pan and popping the pan into a really hot oven is almost too simple to be called a technique, but one of the most frequently asked question I get is, “How do I roast a chicken?” So, it must be a technique!

In Le Creuset’s third giveaway (ten awesome roasting pans—for chicken, potatoes, brownies, cornbread, just about anything!), we’re roasting. We roast a chicken in this pan because it has low sides, allowing great circulation for the moist bird, and because we can put it on the stovetop to make the sauce after we’ve cooked the bird.

How to roast a chicken:

  1. Either truss or stuff the bird (with a lemon or onion) so that hot air circulating inside the cavity doesn’t overcook the breast.
  2. Put plenty of kosher salt all over the bird so that it’s got a nice crust of salt.
  3. Put it into a really hot oven (450°F if you have a clean oven and/or a hood, 425°F if you don’t) for one hour.
  4. Remove it from the pan to a cutting board and let it sit there for at least 15 minutes, while you finish the rest of the dinner.

That’s it. If it’s the weekend and just the two of you, I recommend this recipe. Even during the week I make a quick sauce of a half onion and one carrot, just as I do in the video. (What the video doesn’t show is letting those veg get brown by cooking off all the liquid in the pan, first the wine and then the water and then more water—the full process shots are in Ruhlman’s Twenty.)

Save the carcass to make overnight stock for a midweek sauce.

I wanted to work with Le Creuset because they make probably the best cookware on the planet. Here are the details on my participation and their generous giveaways. The fact is this: if you’re an amazing cook, you can make amazing food with just about anything, but you’ve got to be an amazing cook to make great food with cheap pots and pans. When you have good tools, not only is the food better to eat, the cooking is more fun. Crappy cookware can make the best of us feel like inept and disappointing cooks. Good cookware like these second-to-none Le Creuset pans make your food better. Period.

Chicken with Rustic Sauce


  • One 3- or 4-pound chicken
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 lemon and/or 1 medium onion, quartered (optional)

Rustic Sauce:

  • 1/2 Spanish onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 carrot, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • Squeeze of lemon (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard (optional)
  1. An hour before cooking the chicken, remove it from the refrigerator and rinse it. Cut off the wing tips and add them, along with the neck if you have it, to the pan in which you will roast the bird (you can also tuck the wings underneath the bird). Truss it or stuff it with the lemon and/or onion. Salt the chicken and set it on a paper towel–lined plate.
  2. Preheat the oven to 450°F/232°C. Set the oven on convection if that is an option.
  3. Put the chicken in the roasting pan and slide it into the hot oven.
  4. After an hour, check the color of the juices. If they run red, return the chicken to the oven and check again in 5 minutes. Remove the chicken from the oven and let rest for 15 minutes before carving it.
  5. To make the sauce, remove the chicken from the pan to a carving board, ideally one that will catch the juices. Allow any skin that touches the pan to remain. Place the pan over high heat and cook the skin for a minute. The juices will cook down and stick to the bottom of the pan.
  6. Pour off all but 1 or 2 tablespoons of the rendered fat. Add the onion and carrot, and stir with a flat-edged spoon. Cook until the onion is translucent, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the wine and deglaze the pan, scraping up the caramelized bits. Cook all the wine off (the fat will begin to crackle). Continue to cook until the onion and carrot are caramelized, 1 to 2 minutes. Add 1 cup hot water to deglaze the pan again, and let the water cook down completely. When the crackling begins, stir the onion and carrot until they become nicely caramelized. Add another cup of hot water and cook until reduced by about two-thirds.
  7. While the sauce is reducing, separate the legs from the chicken. You can add any juices that have accumulated on the carving board to the pan sauce. Add a squeeze of lemon and the mustard if you wish. Carve the chicken and arrange it on plates. Holding back the solids in the pan, pour the sauce over the chicken, or spoon it over.

Serves 4

This weeks events are:

Le Creuset Store Appearance
Legacy Village
Lyndhurst, OH

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Food Writer and Cleveland Heights resident Michael Ruhlman will give a short talk and presentation on his latest book Ruhlman’s Twenty: 20 Techniques, 100 Recipes, a Cook’s Manifesto at a free Meet and Greet at the Le Creuset Signature Store at Legacy Village in Lyndhurst, Ohio, on November 8 at 6pm. Michael Ruhlman describes his new book as “the exploration of a single idea: that all of cooking can be reduced to a handful of techniques.” Complimentary copies of the book (a $40 value) will be given to all attendees who make a cast iron purchase of $250 or more on November 8 (while supplies last). Michael Ruhlman is currently the host of The Le Creuset Technique Series, a series of how-to videos that can be accessed for free at

The Meet and Greet will feature light refreshments and an opportunity to hear from the acclaimed food writer and “Iron Chef America” judge. Space is limited, so please call the store at 216.291.8795 to reserve a space.


Bacon Curing Demo at Fabulous Food Show
Expo Center
Cleveland, OH

Friday, November 9

Esteemed author and Cleveland resident Michael Ruhlman will demonstrate “How to cure and cook bacon” in our Culinary Celebration Theatre on Friday, November 9, at 5:45 p.m. “Meet and Greet” Michael immediately following this presentation to discuss his latest works, including Salumi and Ruhlman’s Twenty.

Purchase tickets here.

Other links you may like:

© 2012 Michael Ruhlman. Photo © 2012 Donna Turner Ruhlman. All rights reserved.



41 Wonderful responses to “Le Creuset Giveaway!
Roasting Technique Video & Event”

  • Craig

    Enameled pan would be nice.. I always make this in my carbon steel or cast iron pan, and last time I tried to make a pan sauce it stripped the seasoning and made a simply awful tasting, brown/black sauce that tasted of the pan.

  • John Robinson

    You failed to salt the cavity! That is an ESSENTIAL step to roasting a chicken!!!! 🙂

  • Amy Kelsey

    It looks like a perfect night for roast chicken. I wish I had a Le Creuset enameled pan to cook it in…

  • Paul C

    John Robinson
    You failed to salt the cavity! That is an ESSENTIAL step to roasting a chicken!!!!

    I think you’ll find that is step 3 in the recipe ‘roast chicken for two’ that he linked.

  • PWC

    Place thin slices of cold pork fat (bacon, fatback, etc.) BENEATH the breast skin before roasting–the skin will still brown and crisp above, but the breast meat will be slightly protected from heat, cooking it more slowly, not to mention adding fat to the equation.

    • Mantonat

      If I’m working with a good chicken, following Ruhlman’s process results in perfectly moist breast meat with no need to go poking around under the skin, especially if the chicken is at room temp. when it goes in the oven. Of course, nothing wrong with a little bacon, but I like the unadulterated flavor of chicken fat too.

  • fabiola@notjustbaked

    Roasting a whole chicken has become a thing I do most weeks. Like you said, it is pretty simple, and I love the smell, and a quick easy meal. I would also love this roasting pan. I usually roast my chickens ion my large cast iron pan, but I would not complain one bit if I had to start using a Le Creuset pan.

  • Becca F

    Want want want! My husband and I both love roasted chicken and the stock that we make with the bones!

  • Kat

    You sure make this sound easy and good. Would love to have one of these roasting pans to make this dish.

  • Kelly D

    I am always looking for a good roasting pan, they are very much needed around the holidays too for Turkey or Ham.

  • Angie Green

    Would love one of these pans. This technique makes the best roast chicken ever and is quick and easy enough for rushed weeknight cooking.

  • Lisa @TheDecorGirl

    Okay, you’ve inspired me I will roast a whole chicken. I cook plenty but just not into the whole carcass thing but I’ll give it a shot. I do love my Le Creuset Dutch Oven, could use a new roasting pan…

  • Earl Schiffke

    You should seriously think about doing your own cooking show, whether its for the FN or some other avenue. I think you’d look good on PBS.

    Bring back instructional culinary programming that the public craves !!

  • Chandler Hoffmann

    I would love to have a Le Creuset Roaster! I just got a book that’s All About Roasting and I would love to have different pans to roast with. I just enjoy watching these videos even if I don’t win anything.

  • Carolyn Z

    When I asked my Dad how to keep the breast meat of a turkey juicy, he said not to remove the foil sheet over the breast. It was like a gesture that no one better mess with his juicy white meat!! Thanksgiving memories from one of the best cooks I know.

  • allen

    I love a good roasted chicken, making the stock from the carcass is a soul satisfying process. The essential preservation process & a very effeicient way to distribute flavor & nutrients.
    I’ve made your delicious stock a ftrrwords, mounted with butter & Shallots, but to me that’s gilding the Lilly.
    I had to Google that, from Shakspere, & it means exactly what I thought: sexy enuf as is. You can’t make it beyond the peak, good as it can get. And damn good it is!

  • Janice

    I just got power back post-Sandy here in NJ. So this weekend, I’m planning on roasting a few chickens–not just for their deliciousness, but because I had to trash all my homemade stock and bones that I had in my freezer. Must replenish!

  • allen

    Gild the Lilly & make Ruhlman’s sauce mounted with butter. You deserve it after Sandy.

  • Martin Miller

    Michael, I know that so many cooks swear by La Creuset’s cookware, however, the price is rather steep for many. So while I am tempted to buy one for my wife for Christmas, could you explain why their enameled cast iron cookware is better than un-enameled cast iron? We have several of the latter, and I love cooking with them. And, if I wanted to enamel my own, is there a paint you recommend for doing so? 😉

  • kerrin Buss

    Am looking forward to trying the easy chicken recipe and look forward to the next show.

  • Dee

    Good pans, good knives and good appliances really make cooking fun, but with a bit of passion, good food can be made in the most simple and basic kitchen and if you can share it with friends, so much the better. I love the colors in the Le Creuset line.

  • Amy Cummings

    We roast a chicken probably once a week. Sometimes we just eat it with green beans and potatoes, other times I’ll use the meat for something else. Part of it usually ends up in chicken and dumplings. I am sure it would taste even better if roasted in this Le Creuset pan.

  • Dan Kane

    I roast a chicken in a used-to-be-non-stick pan. The pan sucks but the chicken comes out great (Although I never considered a lemon or onion to reduce hot air circulation in the bird’s cavity).

  • Victoria

    I love roast chicken and generally use a 10-inch cast iron skillet, but I will get out my Le Creuset roasting pan and use it.

    By the way, not on point, but since people read comments, I must say that I made MR’s Best Homemade Bread from his last Le Creuset post, and it was beautiful – looked gorgeous and tasted even better. Make it at your own risk because sliced thin, buttered lightly, and topped with really good cheddar cheese, it is hard to stop eating.

  • Eugenio

    Whole roasted chicken is one of the great comfort foods.
    I don’t have a pan like that though, bring it on

  • Barb

    Thanks for the great tips! I would love to roast a chicken in a Le Creuset roasting pan. 🙂

  • Sandra Davis

    As I get older, my tastes in the kitchen and my desire for finer cookware and appliances deepens. Therefore, my cooking needs would be complete if I were to have a Le Creuset roasting pan!! The aroma of roasting a chicken is a very beautiful thing!


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