Diary of a Foodie

Zen Roast Chicken with Mustard Butter

Diary of a Foodie: Season One: Zen and the Art of Cooking

  • Active Time:10 min
  • Start to Finish:1 1/4 hr
January 2007
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  • 1 (3 1/2- to 4-lb) organic chicken
  • 1 teaspoon flaky sea salt such as Maldon
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons Dijon mustard, or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice, or to taste
  • Special equipment:

    a small (11- by 7-inch) roasting pan with a rack; an instant-read thermometer
  • Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 450ºF.
  • Remove and discard fat from cavity of chicken and pat chicken very dry inside and out. Tuck wings under but do not truss chicken. Sprinkle chicken inside and out with salt and pepper and arrange, breast side up, on rack in roasting pan. Roast until thermometer inserted into fleshy part of thigh (do not touch bone) registers 170ºF, 50 to 55 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, stir together butter, mustard, and lemon juice in a small bowl until fluffy.
  • Transfer chicken to a cutting board and dab a teaspoon of mustard butter on hot chicken to cause skin to glisten.
  • Let chicken stand at room temperature 15 minutes.
  • Carve chicken and serve with remaining mustard butter on the side.
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