My husband and I--decent, self-taught cooks--have been trying to move beyond whole roast chicken to some more interesting variations. In recent weeks we've made coq au vin, pan roasted chicken and jambalaya. Neither of us has been able to brown the chicken pieces (always bone-in, skin-on) without some serious sticking. We have good equipment (Le Crueset, All-Clad, Sitram) and try to follow the recipes (mostly from Cooks' Illustrated and the like) to a T, to no avail. We use chickens from our local farmers' market that we cut up ourselves; a lot of times these don't have a lot of skin to begin with around the upper breast/neck area so we try to be very careful. We don't have this problem with other meats.
It is interesting to me that despite the apparent impending disaster, the end result is generally at least OK. We expected the pan-roasted chicken, made on Saturday, to be a total loss, but it was actually really good despite a few dry bits (we brined it beforehand, and the pan sauce was very tasty after we fished out the big pieces of chicken skin that had stuck to the pan).
Do any of you have some tips to help us refine our technique? I am keen to work on my fish searing but feel I have to master birds first...
Many thanks in advance!