I really love kitchen gadgets. The problem is I need a bigger kitchen to store all the gadgets I’d like to have. On the other hand there are also plenty of gadgets that I think are just a waste of money (not to mention valuable storage space). Vertical roasters fall somewhere between great gadget and waste of money. They are available in the whole gamut of prices – I’ve seen them for as little as $3.99 and as much as $229.00. I honestly don’t know if they work differently enough to warrent the price differential.
Why roast vertically? Two reasons: The skin is crisp all around the chicken, not just on top; and the chicken cooks more evenly. That’s because the metal tube on the inside conducts heat cooking the chicken from both inside and out instead of just from outside in. So here’s my solution to the should I buy a vertical roaster…the bundt pan. It’s something I have on hand and can do the same thing as the vertical roaster – in fact it’s even better because you can cook the vegetables and make sauce in the bundt pan – which is a feature only of the very high end vertical roasters. There is a down side to using a bundt pan and that’s that you can really only make a smallish (about 3 to 3 1/2 pound) chicken on it. Larger chickens just won’t balance on the short tube in the bundt pan. On the other hand, I already own (and store) bundt pans and further, I rarely cook chickens larger than 3 1/2 pounds. So this kitchen trick works for me.
Hope it works for you too.
Bundt Pan or Vertically Roasted Chicken:
Since the chicken cooks from the inside out and out side in, it is done slightly faster than traditionally roasted chicken so the estimated time goes from 20 minutes per pound to 15 minutes per pound (plus 10 minutes for good measure).
1. Prepare the chicken using your favorite rub or just season with salt and pepper ( I used the recipe for Roasted Chicken I published several months ago). In 10-inch bundt pan, combine any vegetables you want to roast with the chicken. Stand the chicken with the bundt pan tube in the cavity.
2. Place the chicken in the oven and bake 40 minutes. Remove from oven and pour water or cooking liquid (wine or broth) to moisten the vegetables (about 1/3 cup).
Return to oven and bake 45 minutes longer for a 4 pound chicken or until it is 170°F or until the juices run clear when the thigh is pricked with a fork. The cooking time will depend on the size of the bird, allow 15 minutes per pound plus 10 minutes for good measure.
Remove from oven and let stand 10 minutes. Carefully remove the chicken from the bundt pan and carve or cut into pieces. Place on serving platter.
Serves 4 to 6, depending on the size of the bird