- 3 -5 lbs whole roasting chickens
- 1 -2 lemon, sliced
- fresh thyme sprig (optional)
- peeled whole cloves garlic (optional)
- unsalted butter
For the Brine
- 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
- 1 -2 sprig fresh thyme
- 3 bay leaves
- 4 cloves garlic, sliced
- 4 cups water
- 1⁄2 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1⁄2 cup kosher salt
Directions See How It's Made
- Mix together salt, brown sugar, and water in saucepan until sugar and salt dissolve.
- Bring to a boil, then remove from heat, add herb/spices and allow to cool to room temp.
- Place chicken in a food-safe plastic bag and add slices of 1 lemon to the bag or place in the chicken cavity.
- Add the brine to the bag, making sure the chicken is covered completely.
- Seal bag, removing as much air as possible, and refrigerate for 24 hours, agitating brine mixture from time to time.
- The next day, remove chicken from the brine and discard brine.
- Rinse chicken with water and pat dry with paper towels.
- Place chicken in a roasting pan and stuff cavity with additional sliced lemon, fresh thyme sprigs, if desired.
- Tuck additional garlic cloves under the skin of the chicken, if desired.
- Rub skin with unsalted butter and seaon with salt and pepper.
- Roast chicken at 400F until the internal temp reaches 170F and the leg moves easily in the joint, 1 1/2- 2 1/2 hours.