spatchcocked chicken

Tonight’s dinner is brought to you by the Food Section of the New York Times.

I’m a NY Times subscriber and get regular emails from the food section. I like the Times recipes because they’re time-tested – if you follow their recipe you will have good results. That’s not necessarily true of other recipe sites out there. The Times can be trusted.

I saw a recipe for a Spice-Rubbed Spatchcocked Chicken, and since we had a chicken in the freezer, decided that was to be dinner, tonight.

It is said that the word spatchcock is an old culinary term and the Oxford English Dictionary states:

n. A fowl split open and grilled after being killed, plucked, and dressed in a summary fashion. Originated in Irish use, later chiefly Anglo-Indian.

It may be an old culinary term, but in all my years of cooking, I do not recall ever hearing anyone say they were going to spatchcock a chicken – we just butterflied the damned things. And it’s a term I would have noticed and remembered. I tend to have a Junior High School mentality when it comes to certain words and terms, and I’m reasonably certain I would have come up with a few inappropriate retorts had it been used. The term seems to have come back into fashion in the late 20th century – probably by someone who wanted to charge more for a butterflied chicken. It definitely sounds more exotic than mere butterflying…

From spatchcocking, we went to Mark Bittman for Sweet Potato Fries. How can you go wrong with Mark Bittman?!? He’s another one who knows his way around a kitchen and can throw together some pretty awesome dishes.

I used one 11 ounce sweet potato for the two of us and it was plenty. I also added some asparagus to the sweet potato sheet pan for the final 10 minutes of baking.

All-in-all, a very successful dinner. I have lots of chicken left over for at least one – if not two – additional meals this week. Maybe a chicken salad and maybe a chicken and vegetable pasta dish?!?

We’ll see…