Savory Roasted Chicken

Free range and pastured are just 2 of the many terms used to refer to chickens that are allowed to roam freely or in large pens/fenced areas outdoors where they can eat whatever seeds, insects and worms they choose. This results in more nutritious eggs and meat for consumers, and more healthy, humane conditions for the birds. Some producers abuse this term and label their eggs as “free range” when in fact all they have done is open a door to allow their chickens access to an outdoor area of bare dirt or concrete, with no actual pasture in sight.

Thus, you need to confirm if your eggs or chickens come from truly “pastured” or “grass-fed” “free-range” conditions.

Pastured chickens are allowed to hunt and peck for food as chickens naturally want to do. They don’t actually eat grass though, despite how it looks when a chicken hits a meadow. They primarily look for seeds and insects. They’ll also eat the occasional small rodent or reptile if they can catch them! Pastured chickens also often receive a supplemental feed in the winter or during dry months. This feed may or may not be certified organic (if the chicken and/or the eggs are to be labeled “organic” then this feed would need to be certified as such as well).

Breast meat cut from pastured chickens have higher levels of vitamin E, monounsaturated fat and omega-3 fat and less omega-6 fat than breast meat from those raised inside.

Savory is the herb commonly used when cooking poultry in Newfoundland. It’s easily found in the spice section of grocery stores everywhere. However, if you don’t have any on hand, don’t fret. Marjoram will substitute just fine!

Ingredients:

1 whole pastured chicken, weighing approximately 3 kg

2 Tbsp fine Himalayan sea salt

2 tsp ground black pepper

3 Tbsp dried savory

Method: Preheat oven to 350-degrees.

Sprinkle chicken evenly with salt, pepper and savory. Place in roasting pan.

Roast chicken, in center of oven until done - approximately 2 hours for a 3kg bird.

How do you know your chicken is “done”?

1) Using a meat thermometer (most reliable-especially for beginners) - insert instant thermometer into thickest part of thigh, below the drumstick, pointing toward the body of the bird.

“Done” = 180-degrees.

2) Drumstick wiggles easily when you pull on it :P

3) If all else fails, use a knife to pull thigh away from body of bird. When done, meat will be completely opaque and there will be no blood to see. Juices will run clear.