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Back Door Chicken

November 4, 2010

After hearing about this chicken from so many people I decided to give it a shot myself. This is “my” name for it,but it’s also called Lemon Roasted Chicken,or as a few of my friends fondly call it “Up the Butt Chicken”. It’s simple.It”s moist.It tastes divine. Enjoy my version, in the back door!

  • 1 4-5 lb. roasting chicken
  • 2 medium sized lemons,room temperature
  • 8 cloves garlic,peeled (optional)
  • 3 T. Kosher salt
  • 2 T black pepper.
  • sprinkling of paprika for color
  • cooking twine for trussing

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Wash the chicken thoroughly in cold water, both inside and out.  Let the bird sit  a bit to let all the water drain out of it. Dry thoroughly INSIDE and OUT with  paper towels.

Sprinkle a generous amount of salt and black pepper inside the chicken, rubbing it with your fingers.Do the same on the outside.

Wash and dry the lemons. Soften each lemon by placing it on a counter and while pressing down,roll it back and forth on the counter.This pops the sacs inside, making it easier for the juices to release while cooking. Puncture the lemons all over using a sturdy round toothpick.
Place both lemons and garlic in the “back door” of the chicken.

Truss  your bird. Not too tight,or the chicken may rebel and explode all over the oven.Sprinkle lightly with paprika.

My bird had a short neck,so I secured that end with a toothpick.

Flip the bird over and get ready to roast! To save clean up, I elevate the chicken on two u-shaped pieces of foil.Taking a foot or so of foil, roll from the short end and form into a U. Make two.Points facing to make an oval,this makes a nice disposable rack so the bird has air circulating all around. Breast side down to start,it’s time to go into the oven for 30 minutes on the middle rack.

Remove from the oven and carefully turn breast side up. Roast additional 30 – 40 minutes depending on size.Rule of thumb is 20 minutes per pound. A 5 lb.chicken would roast roughly,an hour and forty minutes. This is slightly more than a bird with nothing up it’s butt,and slightly less than a bird stuffed with bread stuffing. When the timer rings,turn the temperature up to 400,and finish the browning which is about another 20 minutes.

Beautifully browned,ready to be carved and served with your favorite sides.Don’t waste those lovely lemony juices,spoon them over the chicken.

I served this with Not My Mother’s Potato Kugel and pea pods with sesame seeds.

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