I came up with this recipe on the fly. We bought a whole chicken this weekend and wasn’t quite sure what to do with it mostly because a whole chicken is normally wasted on a family of 3. I decided to spatchcock it because I think it cooks more evenly this way and is easier to handle, besides I could use the back from the chicken to make stock in the future.
Please, enjoy this recipe as it really was on the fly and came out better then I could have expected.
1 chicken, 5lb, Spatchcocked
1/2 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
2 tablespoons rendered bacon fat
1 1/2 tablespoons cracked peppercorn
1 tablespoon finely ground sea salt
1 tablespoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon paprika
1 teaspoon ground sage
First, spatchcock the chicken. If you don’t know how there are a lot of videos out there telling you how. I put parchment paper down on a cookie sheet and put down a wire cooling rack on top. Lay out the spatchcocked chicken on the rack breast side up and put in the refrigerator to dry out for a few hours. I did this in the morning and then did the next step about 4 hours later, this gave the butter and bacon fat time to get to room temperature.
An hour before you are ready to cook, take the chicken out of the fridge and combine the salt, pepper, paprika, thyme, sage, butter and bacon fat into a paste. Slide your fingers between the breast meat and skin making pockets but be careful not to tear the skin. Rub the herb butter into the pockets between the meat and skin, along the skin and along the underside of the chicken.
Let the chicken get to room temperature and preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cook chicken for 45 minutes.
Remove chicken from oven, turn on broiler and place chicken into broiler until the skin begins to get crispy, 5 to 8 minutes.
Take the chicken out, tent with foil and let rest for 10 minutes.
Carve and enjoy.