Soffia’s Crispy Umami Roast Chicken

Yes I said “Umami”, a loanword from the Japanese, umami can be translated to “Delicious, Savory, Tasty”.

I adore roasted chicken and have long been on a quest to come up with a recipe that will honor the dish in a way that only your taste-buds can judge. Last night I offered to roast a couple of chickens for a get together and I have to say I think my roasting pan has finally held the perfect bird. The results were sublime and I have yet to receive so many compliments. You know it’s good when people feel no shame in sucking and licking their fingers at the table or picking on the bones, which didn’t take much as the meat virtually fell right off. I swear I heard slurping sounds, music to my ears. With Thanksgiving around the corner, you could certainly duplicate this recipe with a turkey.

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One of my all time favorite quotes is from Cicely Tyson in Fried Green Tomatoes, when she says; the secret’s in the sauce!

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Step 1

Rinse the chicken inside and out, if present remove neck and giblets from the cavity. Dry well with paper towels and place on a rack over a cookie sheet, uncovered in the refrigerator over night to air dry. This will give the skin a translucent look and results in very crispy skin.

Step 2

Preheat oven to 475°.

Step 3

In a small bowl or food processor, blend the butter with the minced garlic and chopped thyme and season with salt and pepper. Carefully loosen the breast and leg skin of the chicken, careful not to tear the skin. Spread the butter evenly over the breast and leg meat then smooth out the skin. Rub any extra garlic-thyme butter over the outside of the chicken.

Step 4

Season the cavity of the chicken with salt and pepper, stuff the crushed garlic, aromatic herbs and lemon quarters into the cavity and tie the legs together with twine, tuck the wings under. Season the outside of the chicken all over with salt and pepper.

Step 5

Melt butter in 2-qt. saucepan over medium heat; stir in soy sauce; set aside. Transfer the chicken to a baking dish or roasting pan. Brush heavily with some of the soy mixture, and cook, basting twice more (every 20 minutes), until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh, reads 165°, about 1 hour.

This would be a great time to add a few parboiled potatoes and onions. Just cut them into wedges, toss lightly with olive oil and season with salt and pepper, if you have any herbs left chop them up and toss them in. Add a salad, pour a glass of wine and dinner is all set.

Remove the chickens from the pan and rest for 10-15 minutes, meanwhile add 1/2 cup of wine to the pan and de-glaze, add any remaining basting juice and bring to a boil.

Cut the chicken into 8-10 pieces (2 legs, 2 thighs, 2 wings, and cut each breast into 2-3 pieces). Serve with pan juices, cut lemon wedges and fresh, coarsely chopped parsley.

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Soffia’s Crispy Umami Roast Chicken

Four important steps for my best chicken ever! Air dry for super crispy skin. Blast it with flavor, inside, outside and under the skin. These steps create deep, flavorful, crispy and tasty roasted chicken. It’s the kind of chicken that you will want to eat with your hands, a fork and knife just won’t do it justice.

Recipe can be easily doubled for 2 or more chickens.

  • Prep Time: 24 hours 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 25 hours 30 minutes
  • Yield: 1 Chicken 1x
Scale

Ingredients

Chicken

  • 1 3–4 lb. organic chicken
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges, for garnish
  • 1 small bunch of Italian parsley.

Galicky, Herbaceous Butter Under The Skin

  • 1 stick of unsalted butter, softened or if cold cut into small pieces
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 teaspoons of chopped Thyme

Aromatics On The Inside

  • 1 bunch of poultry herbs, such as (Thyme, Rosemary, Sage, Marjoram, Tarragon)
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 meyer or regular lemon, seeded and quartered

Salty, Buttery Baste For Crispy, Flavorful Skin

  • 8 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup ponzu sauce (citrus prepared soy sauce) or soy sauce
  • 1 3–4 lb. organic chicken

Extra Goodies To Enhance Pan Juices

  • 1/2 C Crisp White Wine

Instructions

Step 1

  1. Rinse the chicken inside and out, if present remove neck and giblets from the cavity. Dry well with paper towels and place on a rack over a cookie sheet, uncovered in the refrigerator over night to air dry. This will give the skin a translucent look and results in very crispy skin.

Step 2

  1. Preheat oven to 475°.

Step 3

  1. In a small bowl or food processor, blend the butter with the minced garlic and chopped thyme and season with salt and pepper. Carefully loosen the breast and leg skin of the chicken, careful not to tear the skin. Spread the butter evenly over the breast and leg meat then smooth out the skin. Rub any extra garlic-thyme butter over the outside of the chicken.

Step 4

  1. Season the cavity of the chicken with salt and pepper, stuff the crushed garlic, aromatic herbs and lemon quarters into the cavity and tie the legs together with twine, tuck the wings under. Season the outside of the chicken all over with salt and pepper.

Step 5

  1. Melt butter in 2-qt. saucepan over medium heat; stir in soy sauce; set aside. Transfer the chicken to a baking dish or roasting pan. Brush heavily with some of the soy mixture, and cook, basting twice more (every 20 minutes), until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh, reads 165°, about 1 hour.
  2. This would be a great time to add a few parboiled potatoes and onions. Just cut them into wedges, toss lightly with olive oil and season with salt and pepper, if you have any herbs left chop them up and toss them in. Add a salad, pour a glass of wine and dinner is all set.
  3. Remove the chickens from the pan and rest for 10-15 minutes, meanwhile add 1/2 cup of wine to the pan and de-glaze, add any remaining basting juice and bring to a boil.
  4. Cut the chicken into 8-10 pieces (2 legs, 2 thighs, 2 wings, and cut each breast into 2-3 pieces). Serve with pan juices, cut lemon wedges and fresh, coarsely chopped parsley.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 4-6