Friday Flowers: Pride of Madeira and Salt Roasted Chicken Recipe

Salt Roasted Chicken RecipeI could have called this “The Best Chicken Recipe Ever!”  I didn’t, though.  You see, there are hundreds of best-this and best-that claims out there.  People throw the word “best” around a lot.

This, however, is the best chicken I’ve ever made.  Hands down. And let me tell you, I’ve made dozens upon dozens of chicken recipes.  I’m truly passionate about this recipe.

I could tell you about how I think making this chicken is as cool as making a papier maché sculpture.

I could tell you my childhood memories of eating wonderful foods.

I could tell you all of the hundreds of ways you could use this chicken.Salt Roasted Chicken RecipeInstead though, today I’m going to keep it very simple — just like the recipe.

This is the easiest, most succulent, tender, moist, and flavorful way to roast a chicken!

Pride of MadeiraWe’re in the peak of the Pride of Madeira season.

Aren’t these absolutely exquisite?!  In a sense they’re like Salt Roasted Chicken, only the opposite — the pretty, purple flowers on the outside are tender and soft, while the underneath it’s a bit rough and prickly.

These gorgeous flowers are everywhere at the moment.  Just look around!

Salt Roasted ChickenI hope you’ll try this recipe over the weekend to see just how delicious it is!

Check out the Friday Flowers Gallery to see more floral-food pairings!

Salt Roasted Chicken Recipe
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: about 4
  • 1 (approximately 4-1/2 pound) chicken
  • 4 cups kosher salt
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Remove the insides of the chicken, rinse it inside and out, pat dry with paper towels, and then truss it with butcher twine.
  3. Pour the salt into a large, heavy-bottomed pot and place it over medium-high heat. Stirring frequently, warm the salt until it's very hot to touch, about 8 minutes.
  4. Pour a couple of inches of the hot salt in the bottom of a baking pan that's as close to the size of the chicken as possible, with one end of the pan slightly higher than the other. Gently place the chicken on the salt, breast side down, and at the lower end of the pan. Add the remaining salt to the chicken, covering it as thoroughly as possible. (You want the breast side of the chicken facing down and lower than the rest because all of the juices will flow that way, keeping the breasts super tender.)
  5. Place the salt covered chicken in the preheated oven and roast until the internal temperature is 155 to 160 degrees F. (You can gently stick the thermometer directly through the salt crust.) The final internal temperature will be about 165 degrees, as the chicken will continue to cook for several minutes outside the oven. The juices should run clear and the legs should move easily when it’s done. Cooking times might vary, but it should take about 1 hour.
  6. Remove the chicken from the oven and use a piece of crumbled foil to place under the chicken, opposite the breast side, to ensure the juices are flowing down into the breasts. Loosely cover the chicken with foil to rest for at least 20 minutes before carving.
  7. When you're ready to carve, simply crack the salt off the chicken and cut! (You can even give it a quick rinse and then pat it dry with paper towels.) This is an exciting part -- you're unveiling your masterpiece!






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  1. Paul says

    I am so excited to see this recipe! I have been roasting a chicken every weekend and this recipe looks great! Do you think a cast iron skillet would work for roasting?

    • valentina says

      Hey Paul! 😀 Yes! Cast iron skillet is great — then you can heat the salt in the same pan you roast the chicken in! I hope you love it! xo

  2. Barbara says

    I am so hungry right now that I am going downstairs to start heating up the salt. Have you tried this with fish or would it overpower it?

    • valentina says

      Hi Barbara, I haven’t done this with fish (other than cold curing a salmon) — I do think it would become salty. Somehow with the chicken, the salt helps cook the chicken in a way that tenderizes it and keeps it incredibly moist without ever becoming salty. It’s amazing. I hope you tried it and loved it! 🙂 Cheers!

  3. mary jo frazier says

    I have found a great way to bake potatoes in salt. Fill a deep roasting pan with several cups of kosher salt. Wash and dry four potatoes. Place them in the bed of salt half submerged. I also like to place a sprig or two of fresh rosemary, but that is optional. Then seal the entire top with aluminum foil and place in a preheated oven at 400. I bake it for about 45 minutes, then remove the foil. Brush olive oil on the top of the four potatoes and place it back in the oven until they are soft in the middle….about 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from the salt bed and brush off the extra. These are the BEST baked potatoes I have ever had. To go along with the BEST salted chicken. And, you can save the salt for several uses. Can’t wait to try the chicken tonight. XOXO

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