I just put my very first whole chicken in the oven. I've been cooking for years but I've never made a whole chicken. This was a VERY different experience for me.
It started with this recipe. I've used it on chicken breasts and it's wonderful. Then Albertsons put their whole chickens on sale for 49 cents a pound. Frugal Kelly couldn't resist and bought three. (The limit they would sell.) Today, after the kids went down for their naps, I began the battle.
I started by mixing the spices with butter to create a rub. Then I sliced an onion to make an edible rack for my roasting pan. So far, so good.
Then, I faced the chicken.
Carefully, I opened the package and watched horrified as what seemed like 16 legs squirted out. Gingerly, I picked up the chicken and began to try to wash it inside and out. (As my mother had instructed me.) It was like trying to wash a soaped up, shaved howler monkey. I could not keep my hands on that thing! Then I peered into the depths of the...honestly, I don't know what end of the chicken I was looking into and I'm happier that way. Somehow I had to reach into that thing and dig out all of the innards. I took a deep breath, recited Philippians 4:13 and plunged my hand into the bird. I felt like a magician as I pulled out hearts, kidneys, livers, lungs, pancreases SERIOUSLY LIKE 100 ORGANS. I think I got a prank bird. I think someone at Pilgrims Pride stuffed it full of 127 other chicken organs just to giggle.
Finally, I got the durn thing clean and dry. I plopped it onto the onion rack and poured on some butter / spice mix. Then I started to rub it into the chicken. All the while I'm trying not to think about what I'm doing. After all, I'm just putting butter and spices on a chicken for dinner.
I'm just rubbing the spices into the skin so it can pick up some flavor.
I'm just MASSAGING A DEAD ANIMAL WITH MY HANDS AND NOW I'M GONNA NEED A SILKWOOD SHOWER.
It's all over now. The chicken is in the oven. I've washed my hands a hundred times. I'm really looking forward to dinner.