Thursday, 28 August 2008

Butterflied Chicken

Ah, cooking with Ina, could there be anything finer? Perhaps if she just happened to have T.R. over.... but I digress.

This week we made the Barefoot Contessa's Butterflied Chicken from the Jeffrey's Surprise Party Episode of Barefoot Contessa. I don't think this one is in her books but it is available online at the Food Network. (U.S.)

I wimped out and bought chicken breasts. It just seemed easier that deboning a chicken. I am going to go out on a limb here and guess I am not the only one to take such a shortcut with this one. Plus, they were on sale. Decision made.

Mix the seasonings, stuff it under the skin, rub it down and hand it off to my favourite grill guy. What could be simpler than that?

1/4 cup chopped fresh rosemary leaves, plus 2 sprigs
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
Good olive oil
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 roasting chickens (2 1/2 to 3 pounds each), deboned and butterflied
1/2 lemon, thinly sliced

Mix the chopped rosemary, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, 1 tablespoon olive oil, 2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper together in a small bowl to make a paste.
Place the chickens on a sheet pan, skin side up, and loosen the skin from the meat with your fingers. Place 1/2 of the paste under the skin of each chicken. Rub any remaining paste on the outside and underside of the chickens.
Turn the chicken skin side down and scatter the lemon slices and sprigs of rosemary over each chicken. Season with salt and pepper. Roll each chicken up, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
Heat a grill with coals. Spread the coals out in 1 dense layer and brush the grill with oil. Unroll the chickens, place them on the grill and cook for 12 minutes on each side. (I used a gas grill)

I served it with a quinoa and mango salad with curry dressing from Deborah Madison's Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone. I stuffed the salad in a small ramekin and unmoulded it on the plate for dramatic effect. (I know you have seen this salad the other day but this was actually the first day that I served it, sometimes my posts are out of order!) Garnished with cherry tomatoes and chopped Chinese chives, both from my garden.

This was a great simple BBQ dish for the summer and well worth making again.

Butterflied Chicken was chosen by Stefany of Proceed with Caution, to see how the other Barefoot Bloggers did, check out the Barefoot Blogging website and click on Who's Turn Is It? for the blogroll. Barefoot Bloggers follow Ina Garten's books the second and fourth Thursday of the month, click here to find out how to play along.