Roast Chicken



  1. Heat the oven to 400 F with a rack in the lower third.
  2. Put a large ovenproof skillet on the rack.
  3. While it heats, trim the excess fat from the chicken, pat it dry, rub the outside with the oil, and sprinkle it with salt and pepper.
  4. When the pan is scorching hot, 10 or 15 minutes later, put the chicken in the pan with the breast side up.
  5. Roast, undisturbed, until the chicken is cooked through, 40 to 60 minutes, depending on its size.
  6. It's done when a quick-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part of one of the thighs registers 155 - 165 F.
  7. Carefully remove the pan from the oven.
  8. Tip the pan slightly to let any juices from the bird's cavity flow into the pan, then transfer the chicken to a cutting board and let it sit for at least 5 minutes.
  9. Pour the pan juices into a clear measuring cup and let it sit for a few minutes, until the fat rises to the top; use a spoon to skim off some of the excess fat.
  10. Cut up the bird and serve it with the warm pan juices.