In a large stock pot or Dutch oven, combine water, Kosher salt, sugar, bay leaves, smashed garlic cloves, black peppercorns, rosemary, thyme and slices lemons.
Bring to a low simmer, stirring until salt and sugar have dissolved. Remove from heat and allow to cool fully.
Add the chicken to the cooled brine. If there is room, you can add to the stock pot, just make sure it is fully submerged in liquid. If you need to add 1-2 additional cups of water to make this happen, go for it! You can also use a brining bag.
Cover, if you using a pot, and refrigerate for 8-24 hours. Do not over brine, as meat can start to turn rubbery if brined for too long.
Remove chicken from the brine and rinse with cold water. Continue with your favorite chicken recipe.
To Cook Brined Chicken:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.In a small bowl, combine butter, herbs, Kosher salt and ground black pepper.
Loosen skin from meat and rub butter under the skin evenly. Use your fingers to loosen skin from the meat and for hard to reach places, you can use the back of a spoon to get down in there with the butter. If there is extra butter, just place it in the cavity.
Place the chicken breast side down. Truss the chicken by loosely tying the legs together using cooking twine.
Roast the chicken for 30 minutes, remove from oven. Stick a pair of tongs inside the cavity of the chicken to flip the bird to breast side up.
Continue roasting the chicken breast side up for another 30-40 minutes or until a digital thermometer registers at 165 degrees when inserted into the thigh.
Remove the chicken from the oven. Allow to rest for 10 minutes before carving or serving.If you’ve tried this recipe, come back and let us know how it was!