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Spatchcocked Poultry

 by Tim Granzeau

NOTE:European chickens are air chilled during processing. In the US the chickens are placed into a vat of chlorinated water for chilling; this adds to flavor (chlorine, feces and salmonella)


I get local chickens within 4 days of processing. Most of US chickens are cooled (ie frozen) at 3 degrees Celcius and held for weeks or months before being legally sold as fresh.


Recipe: No recipe, but here are the techniques.


Chicken:  weighing 1 kilo to 1.5 kilo


Spatchcocked: The backbone is either cut out or cut in half with kitchen shears. Place is     on a board and punch the top of the breast to break the breast bone and flatten the bird. Or cut the backbone down the center with a scissors.  


Salt: Generous kosher salt (1 tablespoon) on both sides of the chicken when cooking. You may also salt and place in a sealed plastic bag and refrigerate for 12 hours or 2-3 days. Remove the chicken and dry before cooking. This dry brining tenderizes and flavors the chicken.


1-1.5 tablespoon Adobo Seasoning on the skinside: (This is not anything like Mexican Adobo.     It is an excellent seasoning blend.) Equal parts dried and ground onion, garlic, black     pepper, oregano amd half a measure of ground cumin seeds. I usually add extra oregano or other herb. 


Preheat oven to 200 to 220C. Oil a skillet, saute pan or small roaster with your lipid of choice. (EVOO, Butter or pork/bacon/chicken fat.)  Place chicken skin side up on the roasting pan. I use my fist to flatten the breast. I also turn the thigh/leg to skin side up. I place the wings across the breasts.


Place chicken in the preheated oven. After 20 minutes, lower the temperature to 190C. Continue roasting until the skin is well browned and smells wonderful. ABOUT 50 MINUTES TO 1 HOUR  


The breast temp should be 68 to 180 degrees C. The thigh should be about 5 degrees C higher.


Let stand 15 minutes before carving. I make a pan sauce with the pan drippings.  


Tell me how this works out and I can adjust the instructions to make it better.