sometimes on thanksgiving day or christmas, i do not want to cook a turkey. i know. it's a shame. i start looking for time-saving poultry ideas, so i can get in and out of the kitchen fast and enjoy the festivities. one day while watching a cooking channel, i saw someone cooking brick chicken. i thought, that is perfect! a gorgeous, crispy, impressive looking main dish that takes less than an hour to cook. i am sold! if you can, take the time to marinade this chicken as long as you can. it will make all the difference in the world. you have to try this chicken.
- 1 3lb whole chicken - butterflied open
- 8 large sage leaves - minced fine
- 4 cloves garlic - minced fine
- 1 teaspoon paprika -
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, plus 2 tablespoons olive oil - divided
- juice of 1 lime -
- let's start by ways to butterfly a chicken. first, you can always ask your butcher to butterfly your chicken for you. most butchers will do with with no cost. others, will butterfly it for you for a small fee, but it will save you all the work. i bought my chicken and butterflied it myself. i used this video from youtube.
- the basics: lay your chicken flat on your cutting board. first, you will need to remove the backbone. place the chicken breast side down. holding the tail of the chicken and using a sharp carving knife or sharp kitchen sheers, cut alongside each side of the backbone. discard or set aside for some tasty chicken stock. open the bird up like a book. you will see a small piece of cartilage called a breast bone or the keel bone. using a rocking motion, pull it out. cut off any loose skin around the chicken. you're ready to get started on this recipe.
- combine the remaining ingredients in a small bowl. rub it all over the chicken. season well with salt/pepper to taste. place on a plate or in a large bowl and allow to marinate in the refrigerator for at least an hour, preferably overnight.
- preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- preheat a 14 inch cast iron skillet over medium high heat and add the remaining olive oil. my cast iron skillet looked like this one found here. once hot, add in the chicken, breast side down. (make sure to use a pan that is large and has enough surface area to surround the whole chicken. if your chicken does not fit your pan, cut it in half and cook in 2 batches.)
- place a couple of bricks covered with aluminum foil (for easier clean-up) on top of the chicken to weigh it down. i did not have any bricks, so i used another cast iron pan. another option is using heavy cans.
- lower the heat to medium and allow the skin to crisp up and brown, about 10 minutes. once browned, flip the chicken (so the browned, crispy part is facing up in the pan) and place in the preheated oven for about 25 - 30 more minutes or until cooked through. if using a thermometer, insert it into the thickest part of the meat. it should read 165 degrees.
if your skillet is not oven proof, once it is time to put the chicken in the oven, transfer to a baking dish.
buying a chicken whole is very economical. it cost me a little over $5 to buy an ENTIRE 3 lb chicken! you can pay anywhere from $4 - $6 for a pack of 3 chicken breasts. there are many tutorials on how to break down a chicken yourself and save on the cost of butchers doing it for you. whole chickens and turkeys are usually on sale during the holidays. buy extra and stock up.