Sunday, December 12, 2010

Chicken - I did it my way

I posted my method of preparing a spatchcocked chicken two times before. However, there were only 2 comments. One never knows if that is because nobody read it or it just wasn’t interesting enough. But I gotta tell you, chicken prepared this way is superb. It was this recipe that got me a mention in the Denver Post (at the top of this page).

As you know I cook some esoteric things. This is down home as it gets. Just chicken with some browning and some roasting. I know you don’t want to go to the trouble of brining. But if you do it once you’ll see the benefits.

Today is a double whammy. For a side I made another potato gratin, this time with mostly sweet potato combined with some russet. A very uncomplicated concoction: 1.25 lbs. potato (2/3 sweet, 1/3 russet, slice very, very thin with a mandolin3); cheese, paprika, salt and pepper, and some parmesan to brown under the broiler at the end. Into the oven at 350 along with the chicken. The taters took about 40 minutes.

This chicken looks pretty naked.

Chicken – I did it my way
1 whole fryer chicken
10 fresh sage leaves
black pepper
dried tarragon (optional)
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp unsalted butter

Cut down the side of the backbone and remove it. Save it for stock.

Brine the bird for 3 hours in a freezer bag in a bath of 2 cups of water, 2 tbsp kosher salt (1 tbsp if using table salt.

Remove from the brine, rinse well, and dry thoroughly with paper towels.

Gently loosen the skin and insert sage leaves under it in as many areas as you can reach. Sprinkle with black pepper and paprika on both sides.

In an oven-proof skillet, melt the butter in the olive oil. When the foam subsides, lay the chicken in skin side down. Brown it for 6-8 minutes. While it’s browning, scatter some tarragon (if using) over the top. Also pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees at this time.

Turn the chicken skin side up and baste it with some of the pan juices. Put the pan in the oven and roast until the thickest part of the breast (where the wings are attached) reaches 160 degrees. Last night it took about 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and let rest 10-15 minutes before carving and serving.


Chris said...

For me there is no better way to cook, grill, roast or smoke a chicken than spatchcocking. While fire roasting in my favorite, I do sometimes do it in a cast iron skillet like you did.

Jenn said...

Beautiful picture of that bird in the skillet!! YUM! You know I tried spatchcooking once and I was too impatient and my chicken was cooked all the way through... must try my hand at it again...and soon!

Mary said...

Now you have three comments and a grandmother who is very interested in your method. Have a great day. Blessings...Mary

Linda said...

Wonderful recipes! This is comfort food at it's best!

Pam said...

Tarragon and sage on the chicken sounds terrific. I still need to try spatchcocking. The potatoes look and sound excellent!

Mhel said...

Hi Stephen! I have been off for a long time so I wasnt able to read some of your posts. Kinda sad sad thing in the blogosphere, sometimes its a popularity contest over quality.

Yeah I remember that broaster chicken! I agree with Chris, theres no better way to smoke or grill a chicken than spatchcocking, unless you wanna put some stuffings. I'm sometimes

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