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Aside from presentation, what's the point of trussing a chicken to roast? By pulling the legs in, less dark meat is directly exposed to the heat, which would seem to result in a longer cooking time. This seems esp true of the inner drumstick area. My method these days is to pull the bird out 30 minutes before roasting, slap an ice compress on the breast, and leave the legs fully exposed and kind of floppin' out as the bird comes to temp. So how many of you truss?

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Aside from presentation, what's the point of trussing a chicken to roast? By pulling the legs in, less dark meat is directly exposed to the heat, which would seem to result in a longer cooking time. This seems esp true of the inner drumstick area. My method these days is to pull the bird out 30 minutes before roasting, slap an ice compress on the breast, and leave the legs fully exposed and kind of floppin' out as the bird comes to temp. So how many of you truss?

 

 

From The Global Gourmet

 

Q: Do I need to truss the bird's legs, or can I just roast it without all that extra effort?

A: Trussing, tying the bird into a more compact shape with twine or string, is an old-fashioned method used mainly for presentation, so that the legs and wings would be held closer to the body and hence "more attractive." Today, many chefs recommend not trussing the legs and simply folding the wing tips under the body instead. Why? Because trussed legs take longer to cook at the joint than untrussed legs, and hence the breast also ends up cooking longer and becoming more dry. Many turkeys today come with metal or oven-proof plastic clamps known as "hock locks" or "leg trusses" which, when the legs are placed under them, do the same thing as trussing with string. The choice of trussing is up to the cook, but for a moister bird that takes less time to cook, we prefer not to truss.

 

 

 

I like to tuck the wings under and very loosely tie the legs just to keep them in place a little.

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I've only used a vertical roaster for the last two years and I can't remember the last time I trussed bird. I love my vertical roasters, all teh benefits of beer can chicken without being lock into beer or the pain of trying to balance a bird on said can.

 

Rocky

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To be honest, I keep forgetting about that technique. Yesterday I instructed a newbie (online) how to roast a chicken* in less than an hour, and afterward other people posted that I should have told her to butterfly it. Um, yeah. ;)

 

*No, it wasn't who you think, where you remember it. :lol: It was here.

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To be honest, I keep forgetting about that technique. Yesterday I instructed a newbie (online) how to roast a chicken* in less than an hour, and afterward other people posted that I should have told her to butterfly it. Um, yeah. ;)

 

*No, it wasn't who you think, where you remember it. :lol: It was here.

 

That's just the way we did it for restaurant presentation. We cut the bird completely in half, cut away the backbone and those other bits that Mezzawholah mentions (IIRC, I never bothered to memorize those terms).

 

You know they say you can judge a French restaurant by their roast chicken. ;)

 

Oddly enough we never had a diner who wanted a whole roast chicken.

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Not only does spatchcocking eliminate the agonizing decision of whether to truss or not, it makes the bird taste even better for having cooked more evenly.

 

Not something I would try to coach a newbie through via email though...

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