Summer is here and the temps are warming up (too quickly) in Brisbane! The oven is on the back burner and my weber BBQ's are being put to the test. This grilled spatchcock chicken is the PERFECT family roast. What's more important is spatchcock chicken cooks in half the time so it's definitely one to read up on.
WHAT DOES SPATCHCOCK MEAN?
In simple terms, spatchcock means to flatten the chicken. The term supposedly dates back to the 17th-century phrase "dispatching the cock". This sounds a bit scary to be honest so let's keep things up to date on the terminology! Spatchcock chicken is where you remove the backbone of the chicken and flatten it out. The reason for doing this is when you grill spatchcock chicken it cooks it more evenly. This leaves you with moist breasts and legs.
HOW TO SPATCHCOCK A CHICKEN?
It's actually a pretty simple process. All you need is a chicken, chopping board, kitchen sheers and a little bit of muscle. If you have these then you will be on your way to some delicious grilled spatchcock chicken in no time.
Start by turning the chicken breast side down on your chopping board. Next cut along one side of the spine or backbone from one opening to the other. I'll let you figure out which one is which! Repeat on the other side of the bone and you will be left with the spine. Flip the bird over so it's breast side up. Then, press with the palm of your hand at the back of the breast to flatten it out. You will hear the wishbone pop and the job is done!.
DIFFERENCE BETWEEN BUTTERFLIED & SPATCHCOCK CHICKEN?
This is a good question and truthfully everyone views it differently. Typically when we talk about butterflied chicken we think of a chicken breast that is cut in two and opened out like a butterfly. When we think of spatchcock we think of a whole chicken where the spine is removed and flattened out.
SEASONING YOUR CHICKEN
No point going to all this effort to spatchcock your chicken if you aren't going to season it up properly. Some of you may have your favourite BBQ rub that you use for grilled spatchcock chicken and I have many I like too. But sometimes I like to whip my own up from the many herbs & spices in the pantry.
Here I use some garlic powder, cayenne (for a kick), smoked paprika, salt & the (not so) secret ingredient is a little brown sugar. Mix these all together, rub your spatchcocked chicken in a little olive oil and cover in your seasoning. It's gonna add the right amount of salty, sweet & spicy notes to take your grilled spatchcock chicken to a whole new level!
HOW TO COOK SPATCHCOCK CHICKEN
The beauty of spatchcocking a chicken is even cooking. Hot many times have you cooked a whole chicken to find the breasts are dry. How many different recipes have you read saying stuff 1/2 lb of butter up the bird or cover it with bacon etc in order not to have dry chicken breasts? The truth is you don't need to do that, all you need is sharp kitchen scissors and you can have perfectly cooked grilled spatchcock chicken on your table in an hour!
In this recipe I have grilled the chicken as I use my BBQ more than I use my oven! You can't beat the extra flavour your Weber brings to grilled chicken. Plus the beauty of it is less clean up too 😉
Simply cook the spatchcock chicken on indirect heat for 45mins - 1 hour until either the juices run clear or the internal temp is 70 c or 140f and then grill it for 2-3 minutes either side on direct heat for those nice charred marks!
PEACH & CHARRED SPRING ONION SALSA
You haven't lived until you have made AND eaten peach & onion salsa. To make things a little different than your average peach salsa we used spring onions and chucked them on the BBQ to get a good char. What you are left with is a slight bitterness on the outside and lovely sweet spring onions on the inside. Yeah, they may look a little burnt but trust me. Charred spring onions, diced peaches, ginger, chilli, lime & some basil and this is one peach salsa you are gonna want to make over and over again!
We are back at Mont wines this week for a belter of a Chardonnay. For those of you who didn't read my into to Mont wines on my lamb backstrap post (here it is), they are a small boutique winery in Mornington, Victoria. Martin, Monty Burns is the brains behind the operation and he/they are producing some top quality, very affordable single-vineyard wines from the region. Focus being on the vineyard and the terroir. This Amy Chardy (named after his sister) is my fave to date and when drunk with this bbq spatchcock chicken & peach salsa dish it's even better!!
Stemming from the Red Hill region of Mornington we see a more "classic" style of Chardy with gentle oak integration & well balanced acidity. Notes of grapefruit, peach & lemon giveway to a well rounded finish with good length. It is a great balance with freshly grilled chicken and a delicious peach salsa. It screams a summers day picnic/bbq but is also perfect on a slightly cooler evening around the dinner table with the family!
ALTERNATIVE CHICKEN RECIPES
Inspired by how appetising my grilled spatchcock chicken dish looks and wanna get some more chicken dishes going then check out these guys from myself and other food blogger friends!
Miso Fried Chicken by Yours Truly
Greek Style Chicken & Salsa by Alexandra Cook of "It's Not Complicated Recipes"
BBQ Korean Chicken by Yours Truly
Roast Chicken Salad by Adrianne Jamieson of "Sweet Caramel Sunday
Chicken Satay Sandwich by Yours Truly
Creamy Chicken Pie (using leftover roast chicken) by Robyn Jones of "Mrs Jones Kitchen'
- 1 whole chicken 1.5-2kg
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 pinch cayenne
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp oregano
- 2 yellow peaches
- 4 spring onions
- 1 tsp ginger grated
- 12 leaves basil
- 150 ml olive oil
- salt & pepper
- 1 red chilli
- 1 tbsp lime
- Chopping board
- kitchen scissors
- mixing bowl
- Measuring utensils
- Chef Knives
- Light your BBQ with 2 zones for direct and indirect heat and bring it up to 180c
- Spatchcock chicken by using kitchen sheers and cutting down one side of the spine. Repat down the otherside of the spine
- Turn the chicken so it is breast side up and push down with the palm of your hands at the back of the breast. You will hear a pop and that’s the wishbone breaking.
- Mix the spices together, rub the chicken with the olive oil and rub the mixed spices over the chicken
- Place the chicken skin side up on the BBQ on indirect heat (not on the coals or gas burners) and cook undisturbed for 45mins – 1 hour until internal temperature of chicken is 73c or until juices run clear when pricked with a fork
- Grill chicken on direct heat for 2 minutes each side and allow to rest for 10 minutes
- Finely dice peaches – you can leave the skin on and don’t worry about the cuts looking pretty 😉
- Dice the red chili finely and chop the basil
- While the chicken is resting rub the spring onions in a little olive oil and char on the BBQ for 2-3 minutes
- Dice the spring onions and add them to the peaches along with the rest of the ingredients
- Stir to combine and adjust the seasoning accordingly
- if you can’t spatchcock the chicken yourself then you can ask your butcher to assist
- by cooking the chicken spatchcock style it cooks it quicker and more evenly so your breasts don’t dry out
- the peach salsa can be made up to a day in advance if necessary
- if you don’t or can’t BBQ you can roast the spatchcock chicken in the oven instead
- ALWAYS rest your meat before cutting it. This allows the juices to re-distribute and makes the chicken juicer!