When you have got seven other things to do and dinner is still just ingredients in the fridge, consider roasting as the go-to technique. Use the following roasting tips and get the most out of your oven-cooking adventures.
Why roasting rocks: Much like using a slow cooker, roasting is a set-it-and-forget-it technique. Once you have prepped the food for cooking, meat and poultry may just need the occasional baste and the cut-up veggies will need to be tossed once or twice.
What to roast: Best food for roasting are large cuts of meat, poultry and fish that have inherent fattiness, such as beef loin, whole chicken, and large fillets of salmon. Starchy vegetables like potatoes and turnips are also ideal for this cooking method.
What to avoid: The number one roasting mistake is pricking or puncturing meat or poultry during cooking. If punctured, then the skin of the bird and the caramelized crust on the meat will fail to provide flavorful juices and moisture.
Pan roasting basics
Pan Roasting: Pan-Roasting is ideal for cooking leaner proteins like skin on chicken pieces and fish fillets. To achieve a golden exterior without overcooking, pan-roasting calls for searing the protein in a moderate amount of oil and then transferring the entire pan to the oven to roast until the interior reaches the appropriate temperature.
Elevate your roasting: To ensure even cooking and to prevent burning on the bottom, make sure meat or chicken is elevated on a metal rack. If you do not have a rack handy, rest the meat on a bed of cut-up vegetables, which becomes a richly flavored side dish.
Let a roast rest: Once cooking is complete, allow roasted meats and poultry to rest for at least 10 minutes. This gives the juices inside time to re-disperse evenly throughout the meat, making it moist and easier to carve.
Size matters: When roasting vegetables, try to cut them to equal sizes and vary the cooking time according to density. Softer vegetables such as tomatoes and zucchini will need less time in the oven than starchier produce like carrots and potatoes.
Make the most of the roast: In several circumstances, both a main dish and side dish can be roasted at the same heat, so why not double up in the same pan? Be sure to determine which dish will cook faster (and add that part way through cooking) so that both parts will be done at the same time.
Fast fish dish: During the time it takes to brown buttered bread crumbs atop a fillet of white, flaky fish, the entire dish will be cooked through to doneness- an easy and fast dinner in minutes.
Cooking temperature guide: To take the guesswork out of determining when meat or poultry is done roasting, just employ your trusted cooking thermometer. Proteins are cooked safely at the following temperatures:
Chicken: 74 degrees C
Beef and lamb (Medium rare): 63 degrees C
Beef and lamb (Medium): 71 degrees C
Beef and lamb (Well done): 77 degrees C