Southern Backyard Chicken

Posted by & filed under Recipes, Sustenance.

Southern Backyard Chicken
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 4-6
This recipe is an adaptation of Flat Roast Chicken from one of my favorite cookbooks by Lucinda Scala Quinn, Mad Hungry - Feeding Men & Boys. It makes the juiciest chicken and it's so easy.
  • 1 whole chicken, 3 to 4 pounds, backbone removed
  • Course salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Using kitchen shears, cut along both sides of the backbone to remove.
  3. You can also ask your butcher to do this step for you.
  4. Open the chicken's legs and spread the bird down flat, skin side up.
  5. Press down firmly on the breastbone to flatten it.
  6. Pat it dry with paper towels.
  7. Salt and pepper generously on both sides.
  8. Heat an ovenproof skillet (14-inch) on high heat.
  9. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 1 tablespoon of butter.
  10. Immediately add the chicken, skin side down.
  11. Allow to brown (without moving) for 3 minutes.
  12. Turn the chicken over, careful not to break the skin, and transfer the skillet to the oven.
  13. The chicken is done when it is golden brown and cooked through, 40 to 45 minutes. An instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part, not touching bone, should read 165 degrees.
  14. Remove the chicken to a cutting board to rest for 10 minutes.
  15. Add the lemon juice and the remaining tablespoon of butter to the pan drippings and swirl around.
  16. Caution: the skillet handle will be hot from the oven. Use an oven mitt.
  17. Cut the chicken into pieces and drizzle with the pan sauce and sprinkle with red pepper flakes if you'd like.


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