Rodney Bowers’ Roast Chicken Recipe

Toronto chef and restaurateur Rodney Bowers uses a local, free-run chicken for this easy fall dinner roast.

1 good-quality, local, free-run chicken
3 bulbs garlic (about 20 cloves)
1 bunch of thyme
3-4 bay leaves
Salt and pepper


Step 1: Preheat oven to 500°F. Rinse chicken well; pat dry leaving no wetness on the skin.

Step 2: Smash garlic bulbs using the handle or flat edge of a knife or a mallet and place in chicken cavity along with half of the thyme and bay leaves. Scatter the other half of bay and thyme leaves on top and under the chicken. Generously season the outside with salt and pepper — just when you think it’s enough, season some more.

Step 3: Place chicken in an ovenproof pan or skillet and roast for about 40 minutes. Roast “hard and fast” — at a high temperature as quickly as possible to maintain all the juices and get a crispy skin.

Step 4: The key to victory with this chicken is the rest time. Let it sit under some foil for about 10-15 minutes. Be sure to guard from chicken-pickers!

Step 5: Slice and serve, drizzling the juices that have settled in the pan over each serving.


© Patterson