How to make roast chicken less greasy?
By Caspian Marlowe Jul 28, 2023 0 Comments

Understanding the Greasiness of Roast Chicken

Let's dive into the science behind the greasiness in roast chicken. While the golden, juicy chicken just taken from the oven looks heavenly, sometimes, the amount of oil can be a bit off-putting. Not to mention, it's raining onto the carrots and potatoes on the roasting tray, turning them into slicks of grease!

Interestingly, the greasiness isn't simply due to the chicken's inherent fat. Instead, it's a combination of the chicken's skin, juices, and the method you use for roasting. I found this out through a series of kitchen failures and successes. Trust me, my journey wasn't always smooth sailing—my kitchen saw disasters, poultry wildfire, if you would permit the exaggeration.

The Right Roasting Method for a Less Greasy Chicken

Indeed, the roasting method plays a key role in how greasy or not your chicken turns out. My grandmother, bless her soul, used to roast chicken in a covered pan, which resulted in a chicken blubber party! The chicken would practically stew in its own fat—grease galore! Then I learned the method that'd become my go-to approach.

Simply put, you roast the chicken on a rack. The rack allows the heat to circulate evenly around the chicken, giving it a nice even colour, and more importantly, it lets the excess fat drip down into the pan. Now, how can you not love a hack that marries convenience and health and makes your chicken look like it strutted out of a gourmet magazine?

Importance of Chicken Skin

The chicken's skin poses another conundrum. On one hand, chicken skin crisped to golden perfection is drool-worthy. On the other, it is also a major source of grease. So, do you ditch the skin to make your roast chicken less greasy?

No, the trick here is to create a barrier between the skin and the flesh. As I discovered after watching countless cooking shows and testing various methods, you can create a moisture barrier with herbs, spices, or other seasonings between the chicken's skin and flesh. This not only gives your roast chicken fantastic flavours but also leads to less greasiness.

Picking the Right Chicken

The choice of chicken hugely influences the greasiness of your roast. No two chickens are created the same, and trust me, I've cooked enough to know! Farm-raised, free-range chickens tend to be less fatty than their mass-produced counterparts.

Remember, the type of feed and the bird's age can influence its fat content. It reminded me of the time when I impulsively bought a whole chicken from a local farm. That roasted chicken turned out to be one of the less greasy ones I've ever made—a memorable roast indeed!

Brining the Chicken

Now, let's talk about brining. It's not just for the holiday turkeys, you know! Brining involves soaking your chicken in a solution of saltwater, sometimes with added sugar, herbs, and spices. The idea is to infuse flavours and keep your bird moist and tender. But does brining make your roast chicken less greasy?

Actually, yes. When you brine your chicken, it absorbs the brine's water, diluting the under-the-skin fat. Plus, it helps the meat retain moisture during cooking, limiting the juices (and fat) that would otherwise escape. Thus, making your roast chicken even less greasy!

Carving the Chicken

Let me tell you, carving isn't just an art—it's a science that can potentially make your roast chicken less greasy! Once your gorgeous roast is done, don’t rush to carve it. Let the bird rest, allowing the juices to redistribute. Otherwise, they'll just flow out, leaving you with greasy puddles.

Also, when you finally get down to carving, try to leave as much skin on the bird as possible. The fat that was previously under the skin gets absorbed by the meat, and when you remove the skin, you also remove all that absorbed grease. A clean carving board means a cleaner, less-greasy roast chicken in your plate!

Cook's Tips and Tricks

Ultimately, the key to less greasiness is management—not elimination—of fat in a roast chicken. Using tools like a rack can help drain excess fat, while seasonings create a moisture barrier. Choose your chicken wisely and consider brining for menos grasa. Post-roast rest period and careful carving can also contribute to a less greasy chicken.

But remember, elimination of all fat is not the goal. After all, fat equates to flavour in roast chicken! Balancing between flavour and health is the trapeze act here, and with the right methods and techniques, you can ensure your roast chicken is simply divine, not overly greasy!

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