I've been making this for a long time. The spice mix is great as is, but I usually add something or substitute a different spice or herb. I also stuff the cavity with pieces of green bell pepper as well as the onion. I open the oven after the chicken has been in for about 3 hours and there's enough juice in the pan to baste the chicken with. I start checking the temperature at 4 hours. Sometimes, the chicken is done after 4.5 hours, so it doesn't hurt to check. I baste it again too. This recipe doesn't mention basting, but I think it helps keep the skin from getting dry and rubbery.
After I take it out of the oven, I tent the pan loosely with foil. This helps to soften the skin up a bit.
On occasion, there will be leftover chicken, and I like to use it make Chicken Tortilla Soup.
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I've been making this for a long time. The spice mix is great as is, but I usually add...