- 1 whole chicken (a 3 1/2 to 4 pound bird will serve 4)
- Coarse salt
- Olive oil (optional)
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Season chicken generously with salt. If the bird is small, rub with olive oil for color, but this isn't necessary for one larger than 3 1/2 pounds. Tie legs together and tuck wing tips beneath body. Roast on a small rimmed baking sheet until an instant-read thermometer inserted in a thigh reads 165 degrees, about 12 minutes per pound. Let chicken rest 10 minutes before carving.
If you like, add:
Herbs: Tuck a few sprigs inside the cavity and underneath the chicken. Good picks are rosemary, thyme, savory, and oregano.
Vegetables: Toss them with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Scatter carrots, potatoes, and sweet potatoes around the bird at the start of cooking; add garlic, onion, lemon, and parsnips after 30 minutes.