When some of us busy adults hear things like “spatchcock” or “butterfly” a chicken, they have the following response:
“Yeah, that’s all well and good, but I can just buy a whole chicken and get it out of the way, right?”
In my not-really humble opinion, I disagree, and I’ll tell you why:
- You end up saving money by doing it yourself. Think of it like you think of car repair: you go to the shop and you pay for labor – extra cost! No one wants to spend extra money, especially not in this uncertain economic climate;
- It only takes you 5 minutes if you find the correct technique. I have tried many of these, and the best I have found comes from a channel ‘Cooking with Glenn’ on YouTube- he really gets it done with maybe 4 cuts. That’s if you choose to use a knife. You can always use the traditional way of using kitchen shears – which is a very effective technique – but take it from me, using a knife is more fun;
- You will save yourself the trouble of butchering the whole chicken after it’s cooked, because with this method you can get it into the stove, and let the entire chicken cook (separated, it should only take you 45 minutes instead of the hour and change it takes for a typical chicken to cook (More later on why 400 degrees works better than what some home cooks call, heavenly 350). It’s WAAAY easier to cut chicken up after you spatchcock and cook it, as opposed to trying to carve a chicken as you would a turkey. Chicken is smaller, which doesn’t lend itself easily to carving;
- I promise you a spatchcocked chicken is easier to season. It loosens the skin in all of the important places that you want to get your spices. Spots such as between the thigh and the leg, all along the breast, and even under the ribcage. If you can touch it with your hands and see it, you can assure yourself that your chicken is properly seasoned;
- Remember when I mentioned turkey? Yes, you can spatchcock a turkey too. All my people that would buy a turkey and get up all hours of the night to make sure it isn’t dry… Stop that. You spatchcock a turkey correctly, you can get it in front of your guests within 4-5 hours – what that means to you, is you can sleep in and start cooking later so that your friends and family walk in to the wonderful scent of holiday food – and start eating as soon as they take off their jackets.
So, do yourselves a favor. Everyone may not know what a star you are with that knife, but I bet you they keep eating!