This Spatchcocked Chicken with Mint and Garlic is marinated with mint, lemon zest and garlic and roasted in a cast iron pan for a quick and easy meal for any day of the week.
I got some new toys to play with several months ago, but never found the time to play with them. This is story of my stay-at-home-life. It’s no surprise, as a wife and mom, that I’m bottom on the family totem pole.
When I was in high school, what seems like a lifetime ago, I wanted to be a photographer. Specifically, a sports photographer. These were the old days of film, LOL! I learned my way around a dark room, had my pictures photographed in the community paper.
I was so proud seeing my name published under each photo. It was my high school mentorship at The Houston Chronicle where my eyes were opened by the staff photographers who took me with them, chasing down stories, from car accidents to college football games.
These guys took me under their wing and gave me their sage advice: Don’t become a professional photographer.
The life is hard and the pay sucks.
I kept photography as a hobby shortly after that.
And of all things, food photography is my latest poison. Photographing my kids is easy, they are so darn cute and there’s always a great moment to photograph. But our dinner? With terrible light, a dark kitchen and a family eagerly waiting for their meal, I threw my hands up in defeat.
But I knew I had it in me and I kept at it and practiced and practiced. I emailed fellow food bloggers, sought advice from photography friends, and deleted hundreds of bad pictures until I got the hang of it.
Then something clicked – no pun intended! I started getting it. And I’ve stretched my wings. It just goes to show that when you work hard enough, and you want it badly enough, you can achieve most anything.
Luckily, an easy and delicious dinner is not that difficult to achieve. My family loved this spatchcocked chicken with mint and garlic. The marinade is easy to whip up. By butterflying the chicken, you cut the roasting time in half, maybe more if you have a convection oven.
A fresh, easy and delicious meal for any day of the week.
- 5 lb whole roasting chicken
- 1 cup mint, fresh, loosely packed
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 lemon, juice & zest
- 5 garlic cloves
- Rinse chicken and pat dry with paper towels. If the giblet and neck are in the chicken cavity, remove them and reserve for another use or discard.
- Place the chicken, breast side down, on a cutting board. Using poultry shears or a large, sharp knife, cut along each side of the backbone.
- Pull the chicken open slightly to cut the backbone out completely. Reserve for stock or discard.
- Turn the chicken breast side up and open it as flat as possible.
Press down firmly to break the breastbone and flatten the bird.
- Rinse the chicken again and pat dry. Set aside.
- In a blender pulse mint, olive oil, lemon juice, lemon zest and garlic until emulsified.
- In a large nonreactive container place the butterflied chicken and cover with marinade, massaging it into the chicken and under the skin. Cover and refrigerate chicken for 4-6 hours.
- Remove chicken from the refrigerator 30 minutes prior to roasting.
- Preheat oven to 425ºF and place chicken in a roasting pan or a large cast-iron skillet, breast side up.
- Roast chicken for 45 minutes, or until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh away from the bone registers 170º-175ºF. If chicken starts to burn, loosely cover with a sheet of aluminum foil.
- Remove from oven and let chicken sit for 10 minutes before serving.