Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Broasted chicken

The title of this is not a typo. I used to see the term "broasted" though I can't remember where or by whom. It's appropriate since the bird is partly braised and partly roasted. This chicken was so large it just barely fit into my largest skillet. But, it did. It was over 5 lbs. Good thing I got it started when I did (10 of 5 pm) because with resting time it took over an hour.

Sunday’s NY Times magazine has a nearly always fascinating food section. This week the essay was boring (about a guy’s cookbooks all being boxed up and inaccessible). But the recipe was for a spatch-cocked whole chicken. I’ve posted this before but with a completely different spice profile.

The cooking technique was different than my own and I’m sticking to my very own guns.

Broasted chicken

1 4-5 lb. frying chicken

3 teaspoons fennel seed

2 tsp coriander seed

¾ tsp whole black pepper corns

½ tsp cumin seed

¾ tsp hot paprika or pimenton

lemon wedges (optional)

Spatchcock the chicken (remember how?). Just cut down both sides of the backbone and break the breast bone so that it lies flat.

Brine the chicken for a couple of hours. Rinse well and dry with paper towels.

Toast the spices in a dry skillet for 2 minutes or until fragrant. Let them cool and then rough grind them in a spice grinder. Don’t have one? Mash them in a mortar and pestle.

Rub a little olive oil all over the bird and then rub in the dry spice mix (no salt, remember: you brined it).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat (5 on my electric stove dial).

Add 1 tbsp olive oil and 1 tbsp butter. When the butter has melted and the foam has subsided put the chicken into the pan skin side down. Cover with a piece of foil and weight it (I use a teakettle with some water in it). When the chicken is well browned, 5-6 minutes, turn it skin side up and put the pan into the oven (uncovered).

Roast until the breast registers 165 degrees in the thickest part (next to where the wings are attached). Also test the thigh meat. It it’s at least 165 you’re golden. I was using a very large chicken and it took about an hour plus.Remove the chicken to a cutting board, tent with foil (don’t use the piece you used earlier, it’s contaminated) and let rest 5 minutes. Cut into serving pieces, squeeze on some lemon juice (if using), and dig in.

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