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Butterflied Chicken with Garlic Toasts

Here, a whole chicken is butterflied to create meat of an even thickness, ensuring that it cooks on the grill at the same rate.

Ingredients:

  • 1 chicken, about 4 lb.
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • Grated zest and juice of 1 large lemon
  • 3 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 large shallot, chopped
  • 1 1/2 Tbs. whole-grain mustard
  • 1 Tbs. minced fresh rosemary
  • 3/4 tsp. salt, plus more, to taste
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper, plus more, to taste
  • 4 garlic heads, top 1/2 inch cut off
  • 4 slices country-style bread

Directions:

Prepare the chicken and garlic
Ask the butcher to butterfly the chicken, or, to do it yourself, split the chicken along one side of the backbone, then press firmly against the breastbone to flatten.

In a shallow, nonreactive baking dish, whisk together the wine, lemon zest, lemon juice, 2 Tbs. of the olive oil, the shallot, mustard, rosemary, the 3/4 tsp. salt and the 1/4 tsp. pepper. Add the chicken and turn to coat evenly. Cover and let stand while the grill heats. (The chicken can be refrigerated at this point for up to 8 hours; turn occasionally in the marinade.)

Drizzle the remaining 1 Tbs. olive oil over the garlic heads and season with salt and pepper. Wrap each head in aluminum foil. Set aside.

Grill the chicken and garlic
Prepare a gas or charcoal grill for indirect grilling over high heat. Lightly oil the grill rack.

Remove the chicken from the marinade and place, skin side down, on the grill rack. Place the foil-wrapped garlic heads alongside the chicken. Cover the grill and cook for 25 minutes. Turn the chicken over, cover the grill and continue to cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of a thigh, away from the bone, registers 170°F and the garlic feels tender when squeezed, about 25 minutes more. A few minutes before the chicken is done, toast the bread over the hot area of the grill, turning once.

Transfer the chicken and garlic to a carving board, let stand for 5 minutes and then cut the chicken into quarters. Serve the chicken with the garlic heads and bread. Diners can squeeze the garlic from its papery sheaths onto the bread. Serves 4.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Food Made Fast Series, Grilling, by Rick Rodgers (Oxmoor House, 2007).