Thursday, August 28, 2008

BB: Ina's Butterflied Chicken

(sorry for the delay, everyone!)

So this week's recipe pick came from... me! I look to these blogging events as a way to challenge myself in the kitchen, hopefully doing new things and learning new skills. When I started looking for recipes, I knew I wanted something with chicken (as my husband doesn't eat pork or red meat, so we are always looking for new ways to serve chicken). I came across this recipe and pretty much stopped looking! I had never butterflied or deboned a whole chicken before, so I definitely would be setting up a challenge. As an added bonus, I have an overgrown rosemary plant on our balcony and this was a great way to use some up!

First, I needed to learn how to debone and butterfly a chicken. I went off to youtube, where I found plenty of deboning videos and plenty of butterflied videos, but none that showed how to debone AND butterfly while keeping the remainder intact. This site here described it with a few pictures, but that was definitely not good enough for my novice hands. With enough googling I eventually found a decent video, enough to get my started (regretfully, it seems I did not bookmark it and I can't find it again).

I set out with my paring knife and whole chicken, but given the fact that I was home alone and was, well, working with raw chicken, I didn't take any middle of the road pictures... but here is my finished product (before cooking):

No, it isn't the prettiest butterflied chicken (please try not to laugh), but I was dang proud of myself! I wasn't quite sure what to do with those legs, though. Cut them open? Probably. I just left them as is. I added the rub and wrapped it up.

Hot off the grill... I swear these are the best grill marks I've ever made!

We served atop a salad. YUM! I hope everyone that got to make it enjoyed it. We certainly did.
Butterflied Chicken
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~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
~Kosher salt
~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.


  1. Heh, that is funny. Also, what a fun week for you! I just made the cookies you picked for TWD next week.

  2. Life is a comedy of errors. Kudos to you for all your time at the gym. I only wish I could be so dedicated. I always remember the dinner part and forget the gym.:)

  3. I am so impressed that you butterflied it--it looks wonderful to me. Great grill marks too! Thanks for a great recipe pick--I didn't butterfly but I enjoyed it!

  4. This recipe is a keeper. Can you believe how many butterflying videos there are on the Net? I was so relieved. ;)

  5. I am so not worthy! That chicken looks amazing and I am sooo impressed with the deboning/butterflying.

  6. I've never butterflied poultry. I'm terrible at just cutting a whole chicken into pieces, so I haven't wanted to even consider butterflying one. I figured I'd just ask the butcher to do it for me if I needed it done. :)