A recipe is merely words on paper; a guideline, a starting point from which to improvise. It cannot pretend to replace the practiced hand and telling glance of a watchful cook. For that reason, this is also an account of what happens when I make this dish, so you’ll understand each step. Of course when you cook it once, it becomes yours, so personalize it a bit. Add more of an ingredient you like or less of something you don’t like. Try substituting one ingredient for another. Remember words have no flavour, you have to add your own!
1. Whisk the salt and sugar into the water until they’re completely dissolved. Place the chicken in a large bowl or pot and cover with the water. Refrigerate it in the brine for an hour or two then remove it and dry well with a clean towel.
2. Preheat your oven to 350°F. Toss the vegetables with the oil and a bit of salt and pepper then pour them into a casserole dish or shallow roasting pan. Sit the chicken on top and roast it until an instant read thermometer registers 160°F in the thickest part of the breast and 165°F in the thigh. Cooking time depends on the size of your chicken.
3. As soon as the chicken is cool enough to handle - and without taking it out of the pan - cut off the legs and slice off the breasts. Cut as much of the meat as possible off the bones and stir into the vegetables. Serve together.