Saturday, May 26, 2012

Roast butterflied chicken and potatoes

I have seen recently this method of cooking a whole chicken several times in the last month or so and have been meaning to try it for a while.  I have seen it cooked on top of a bed of vegetables, as well just potatoes and on the barbecue.  Butterflying the chicken in this way allows it to cook much quicker, and my family decided because of this it kept the chicken moister.

The thought of the chicken roasting on a bed of potatoes appealed to me, I recently cooked a roast rack of lamb on potatoes and the potatoes were wonderful.  With all the juices that come out of a chicken this could only be better.

Butterflying (or spatchcocking) is quite easy to do, but you do need a good pair or kitchen shears.  I expect any decent butcher would do it for you.

Feeds 4

1 whole frying chicken
4 medium potatoes sliced
1 onion sliced
sprig of thyme
sprig of sage
Drizzle of olive oil

Preheat the oven to 400 and while it is heating flatten the chicken. Turn the chicken breast side down on cutting board and using a pair of kitchen shears cut along the side of the back bone.

These is easier than you would think, there is only one area just by the thigh bone that is a little tough.  Now cut down the other side of the back bone and remove it.

This along with the neck can be used for stock, I have a ziploc bag of chicken bones in my freezer which I add to when I have a small amount of chicken bones and no time to make stock.  Now turn over the chicken and push down with the heel of your hand to flatten it.

In a roasting tin place the sliced potatoes and onions and half the herbs.

Sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper and a little olive oil, a couple of garlic cloves and some sliced lemon would have been good here.  Now place the chicken on top and sprinkle on the remaining herbs and more salt, pepper and olive oil.

Place in the 400 oven and cook for about 3/4 of an hour.  The chicken should be cooked and the potatoes soft and full of chicken juices under the chicken and a little crusty around the edge.

I served this with some asparagus and a green salad.  The potatoes do not look too pretty, but believe me when I say these were some of the best potatoes I have had in a while, and I love potatoes.  The chicken was beautifully cooked and still moist, you could have a roast dinner on the table in less than an hour after work!

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