Friday, December 2, 2016


To butterfly a chicken for roasting, you remove the backbone, make a slit in the breast bone, also known as keel bone, and flatten it before cooking. The chicken cooks faster and the skin browns more evenly with this method. I made a fresh salsa verde (green sauce) to serve along with the chicken. 

1 (3 to 4 lb) whole chicken
4 fresh thyme sprigs
1 T extra-light olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Place chicken, breast side down, on a plastic cutting board.
Cut out the backbone with kitchen shears and trim off any excess fat at the base of the tail.
Discard chicken back or save in a plastic baggie and freeze for making stock later.
Using a sharp knife, make a slit at the top, between the breastbone (this will help flatten the chicken).
Turn chicken over and press down hard with your hands to flatten the chicken.
Tuck wings under and flip legs inward and down.

Place thyme sprigs on a rimmed baking sheet or roasting pan.
Place chicken, breast side up, on top of the thyme sprigs.
Rub the olive oil all over the skin of the chicken.
Season the chicken with salt and pepper.

Place in oven and roast for about 60 minutes, basting with pan juices, after 30 minutes. 
Chicken is done when the skin is golden brown and breast meat registers 165 F (74 C) degrees with an instant-read thermometer.

While chicken is roasting, make the Salsa Verde.

Remove chicken from oven and place on a cutting board, tented with foil for 5 minutes before cutting into pieces.

Salsa Verde
1 large bunch Italian parsley
8 large basil leaves
2 T capers, drained
2 anchovy fillets
1 clove garlic
Zest and juice of 1 large lemon
Pinch of red pepper flakes
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 T extra-virgin olive oil

Place ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth.
Spoon into a small serving bowl and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Serves 4

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