The final Barefoot Bloggers recipe for August is Butterflied Chicken and was selected by Stefany of Proceed With Caution. At this point I am not sure that there is anyone who has not heard of the Barefoot Bloggers but if I am wrong you can read all about this wonderful group cooking our way through Ina Garten's recipes here. Ina's recipe for Butterflied Chicken can be found at the Food Network here from an episode called "Jeffery's Surprise Party" where Ina surprises her husband with a beach BBQ. (Yep, that Jeffery is a lucky man!)
My chicken is not actually butterflied (sorry Ina!) since instead of buying whole chickens, deboning them and splitting them down the middle not quite all the way through so they lay flat, I bought some lovely organic, bone in, skin on chicken thighs. Yes, I know it's cheaper and "foodier" to buy the whole chicken and cut it myself but to be honest that is so NOT fun to me. I feel the time I saved, the effort and the avoided "gross out" factor from too much raw chicken handling were well worth my splurging on the individual pieces. For those of you worried about my health (thank you by the way for your concern!), I do realize boneless, skinless breasts would be the less fatty choice but given the fact that the organic thighs were on sale and roughly half the price of the organic breasts and even cheaper and way more appetizing than the regular chicken breasts, that's what I chose. I do think I should get some points for buying organic! My chicken is not grilled over a fire either, (Remember I explained my non-existent grilling skills in a previous post). Instead I grilled them on both sides in my trusty grill pan and then so they wouldn't be charred, finished them up in the oven at 425 degrees for about 15 minutes, which cooked them perfectly. So what does my chicken have in common with Ina's recipe? The seasoning baby! It's all Ina--I followed that part to the letter!
Barefoot Contessa, The Food Network
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
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.
Results: Chicken is not my favorite protein but this was GOOD. The lemon, garlic and rosemary are wonderful compliments to the chicken and it was some of the most moist chicken I have had in a long time. I liked the fact that tucking the paste under the skin of each thigh meant that even when I pulled the skin off of them before eating (I was trying to be good!), there was still lots of yummy flavor in the meat. It also plated up beautifully (I think) with the lemon slices and some extra rosemary scattered over the top.
I served the chicken with a green salad and some 'Mediterranean Spaghetti Squash" mixed with fresh tomatoes, onion, garlic, capers, feta cheese, parsley and a bit of the leftover rosemary. Delicious! The chicken was a great recipe pick from Stefany. You can check out the other Barefoot Bloggers and see how their chicken turned out here.