The fresh herbs and lemon give the chicken a wonderful flavor and keep it moist. Baking it breast side down allows the juices to moisten the breast meat. I do the same for turkey.
1 chicken. If you can afford it, Rocky or Mary’s air dried are the best
Salt and pepper
3 Tb olive oil (EVOO is best)
Garlic infused olive oil
fresh herbs: 3 sprigs rosemary, 5 sprigs thyme or 1 teaspoon dried thyme
5 medium or 4 large garlic cloves thinly sliced
1 lemon split in half
Remove giblets from cavity flaps. Rinse and dry chicken (inside and out) with paper towels.
Place chicken on a large plate. Salt inside and out.Return to the refrigerator for an hour.
Preheat oven to 430′ Oil roasting pan and place chicken in, breast side up.
Stuff breast cavity with ground pepper and lemon halves
Mix garlic, rosemary and thyme in 3 Tb olive oil. Tuck it under the breast skin and under thigh skin. Smear garlic oil on top with your fingers, sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Close flaps of skin over cavities, and flip chicken breast down. Oil and season the back as you did the breast.
Roast at 430′ degrees for an hour and 20 minutes, (more or less depending on the size of the chicken.)
You can bake a whole eggplant, potatoes, yams and/or a butternut squash alongside the chicken. Place them on foil to avoid getting their juices onto the roasting pan (especially the yams!)
Our favorite is roasted chicken with yams: