I have to be honest with this one, I had never brined a chicken before and hadn’t though much of the whole process. It sounded a bit messy and required some forethought all of which I wasn’t too keen on. Then the fateful day finally came when I gave it a good old college try and WOW!!! Since that day I’ve made it over and over again. Neither my husband nor I really care much for chicken though we tend to eat it more than any other animal. When he took the first bite of this bird his eyes flew wide open. It was a revelation to my non-brining self;) Those of you who are brining pros may be underwhelmed by this post, but I think the rest of you will be pretty glad you tried it! This recipe is an adaptation of a William Sonoma one.

The best part is that the leftover chicken, roasted veggies, and wine jus make for an exceptional soup the next day. Today I’ll share the recipe for the chicken and next week will follow with the delightful “leftover” roasted chicken soup recipe.

all rights reserved Crystal Cartier 2013 Copyright

  • 1/2 cup fine sea salt
  • 1 quart warm water
  • 1 quart cold water
  • 1 chicken, about 5 1/2 lb, giblets removed and legs trussed
  • 2 Tablespoon unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 Tablespoons dried thyme
  • Salt and Pepper
  • a bunch thyme sprigs
  • a bunch rosemary sprigs
  • 1  large yellow onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 lb carrots, coarsely chopped

~Dissolve the salt in the warm water in a glass bowl large enough to hold the chicken. Add the cold water and stir. Rinse  chicken, then submerge it breast side down in the brine. Cover and refrigerate 4 hours.

~Preheat an oven to 400°F.

~Remove the chicken from brine and pat dry with paper towels. Rub with the butter and season with thyme, salt and pepper. Place onions and carrots around the bird. Toss the thyme and rosemary sprigs in the cavity and around as well.

~Place the chicken breast side up in a covered dutch oven. Roast for 25 minutes. Flip the chicken breast side down and roast for 30 minutes more. Flip the breast side up again and roast uncovered for about 40 minutes more until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh reads 165 degrees. Pour the juices from the chicken cavity back into the dutch oven and transfer the chicken to a carving board. Cover loosely with aluminum foil and let rest for 15 minutes before carving.

~To make the wine jus, skim off any bits of skin and fat from the surface.  Add the wine and boil until reduced by half. Add the stock and boil until the liquid further reduced by half.

Serve carved chicken with the hot wine jus.

***Save all leftover wine jus, chicken and veggies in the fridge to use in this chicken and wild rice soup recipe.


The bird variation below was roasted with mini apples, pearl onions, blue potatoes and various root vegetables. The combinations are endlessly delicious!

all rights reserved Crystal Cartier 2013 Copyright

It seems like everywhere I go these days everyone is sick. Whether it’s a party or the grocery store it’s nothing but sniffling and coughing all around. Ick! Today’s treat is an effort to deliciously soothe or even help prevent winter sickness. It’s packed with vitamin C from fresh squeezed blood oranges, the ginger helps with headache and nausea, the raw honey is full of nutrients and throat soothing sweetness, and the cinnamon is rich is immune boosting minerals. Together they make a tasty symphony of soothing relief.

This concentrate is always ready to brew a delightful hot cup of yum. Keep it in the fridge in a jar and drop 3-4 spoonfuls in hot water whenever you feel like a soothing treat. It also makes a beautiful winter gift, especially to families with kids;)

all rights reserved Crystal Cartier 2013 Copyright

all rights reserved Crystal Cartier 2013 Copyright

  • 3/4 cup freshly squeezed blood orange juice
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 large hunk of ginger, peeled and coined (or 1 Tablespoon dried ginger)
  • 5 pods cardamom (optional)
  • 4 allspice berries (optional)
  • 5 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1/2 cup raw honey (or 1/3 cup for a less sweet drink)

~ Bring water to a boil in a pan and add the ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, allspice and cinnamon sticks. Boil until liquid is significantly reduced, about 30 minutes.

~ Before cutting the citrus, roll them on the counter with your palm to release the juices. Squeeze all of the citrus juice.

~Once reduced, strain the concentrated spice mixture. Allow to cool slightly then add the honey and stir to dissolve. Add the citrus juice last, pour into jar/s and store in fridge.

~ To make tea, give the jar a gentle shake to mix up any spices that may have settled to the bottom and add 3-4 large spoonfuls of concentrate to hot water.


all rights reserved Crystal Cartier 2013 Copyright

I saw a bag of multi-colored potatoes at the farmers’ market and couldn’t resist. We don’t eat potatoes often here, but when we do we do it right. A nice variety of purple, yellow, and red potatoes provide a slight variation of texture and flavor while you’re eating these tasty tots. When it’s rainy (or snowing!) and chilly there’s nothing better than a crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside roasted potato and it doesn’t get any easier than this. Getcha some;)

all rights reserved Crystal Cartier 2012 COPYRIGHT

  • 2 pounds multicolored potatoes (red, purple, yellow)
  • ~1/4 cup rosemary infused extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra drizzle if needed
  • 1 Tablespoon smashed garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon+ fresh thyme leaves
  • 5 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • fresh ground salt and pepper

~ Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

~ Wash and halves potatoes. Toss potato halves with olive oil, garlic, thyme, and rosemary sprigs. Spread on baking sheet and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast until crisp on the edges and tender on the inside ~40-45 minutes depending on size, tossing halfway through cooking. When tossing, drizzle more olive oil if necessary.


all rights reserved Crystal Cartier 2012 COPYRIGHT



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