Preheat the oven to 475F
Rinse a ~3 lb whole chicken and pat dry. Make sure that it is very dry, a wet chicken will take too long steaming. Season the chicken liberally with salt and pepper, with extra seasoning on the thick sections and a little less on the ankles and wings.
Preheat a 10-inch skillet on the stove, medium heat. Once preheated, put the bird in the pan breast side down, and place in the oven. Listen for a sizzle, it should start browning within 20 minutes. After 30 minutes, flip the bird and roast another 10-20 minutes. Depending on the size, flip back over to recrisp the breast skin another 5-10 minutes. Total oven time will be 45-60 minutes.
Take the chicken out of the oven and let rest 10 minutes.
A general rule of thumb is that a whole chicken is about 50% meat. Some Possible adjustments to this recipe include:
1. Cut up a whole chicken into pieces, the rest of the recipe still applies
2. Lift the skin around the breast and thigh to create a pocket. Place in the pocket a small tender sprig of either rosemary, thyme, marjoram or sage
3. After salting, cover and put in the refrigerator for up to 24 hrs. This adds tenderness and infuses it with flavor
4. The bones and skin can be used to make a chicken stock. In the pan you cooked with, pour off the oil and add: bones, skin, 2 carrots chopped, 2 celery sticks chopped, 1 onion chopped and then cover with water. Simmer this for 1-2 hours.