Wednesday, January 4, 2012

spatchcock chicken

Quick, juicy & flavorful - weeknight chicken!
Roasted Chicken is a snap, even on a weeknight, when you use the spatchcock technique.  This centuries old method for preparing fowl, removes the backbone of the bird to reduce cooking time. (Grab your heavy-duty kitchen shears for this task.) Flattening the fowl over the heat source cuts cooking time in half and I promise - it yields a juicy bird.  Martha Stewart gives a little demo and some grilling ideas at this link.

Mad Hungry's recipe is super simple with loads of flavor.  (We love this cookbook by Lucinda Scala Quinn.) During prep, I always ask for a little assistance with seasoning the bird. With messy hands, I relied on Ryan to snap pictures. (Thanks, Ryan!)

Be bold - give this method a try.  We've used it on turkey, too!

Shout-out to Alyssa - Thank you for the italian salt with black garlic; it made this chicken spectacular!

Spatchcock Chicken
adapted from Mad Hungry's 
Flat Roasted Chicken


1 whole chicken, 3-4 lbs, backbone removed
salt & pepper (you can use your favorite salts or seasoning here)
1 T evoo
1 T butter

** My kids like it plain with a little salt and pepper at the table.  But you can make a light gravy with the juice of 1 lemon and a pinch of red pepper flakes added to the juices.  Just whisk together and drizzle over the carved chicken pieces.

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Use your kitchen shears to remove the backbone of the chicken.  (I reserve mine in a large freezer bag; when it is full, I make broth.)

2.  Open the chicken's legs and season with salt and pepper.  Flip and repeat on the other side.

3.  Heat an ovenproof skillet (cast iron is our favorite!) on your stove top.  Add 1 T of butter and a little evoo.  Place your chicken inside, skin side down. Rest for 3 minutes to brown.  Turn the chicken over - use a wide spatula - try not to break the skin!

4.  Place your chicken in the middle of your preheated oven (My birds usually take 40-45 minutes.) to finish cooking.  You are looking for an internal temperature of 165 degrees.

5.  Remove from the oven. Rest the bird on a cutting board for 10 minutes before carving.

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