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Chicken Under a Brick

I was going to try this next weekend. Just a general recipe that I read somewhere but can't find anymore. For anyone who has tried it, is this the general idea?

Marinate a whole fryer (backbone removed) with olive oil, lemon, parsley and garlic for 1 hour. Season the bird with salt and pepper, place skin side down in a cast iron skillet over medium high heat with aluminum foil covered bricks on top, cook for 10 minutes. Transfer to oven set at 400 degrees and roast for 15 to 20 more minutes.

Does this sound about right? If you have a specific recipe I would appreciate hearing it. Thanks.

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  1. I have to dig it up but I made it last summer using the recipe from Cook's magazine. It was absolutely delicious. My recollection was that I marinated it for much longer than an hour. At least all day and maybe overnight. Besides removing the backbone I had to really flatten the breast so that it would cook evenly. I made mine on the grill so it cooked there the whole time cooking breast down first. I believe the total time was more than 30 minutes tho. As I said, I'll dig up the recipe and post it in a bit.

    1 Reply
    1. re: KingsKetz

      Thanks, hope you can find it. I'm pretty sure about the ingredients, its the time and temperature I am a bit uncertain about. Nothing like having a recipe in mind then not being able to find it.

    2. Cook in the skillet until the skin is golden brown and crisp on medium to hight heat. 10 minutes sounds fine.
      The oven part depends on your oven, the size of the chicken and so on. I would go at 425 until internal temperature is 160, take it out and let it rest for at least 10 minutes. You can even go as high as 500.
      Marinating for 1 hour is definitely not enough, overnight will do.

      1. It is a standby for me and the smaller the chicken the better. I find it cooks more evenly if I first cover a flat pan lid or a heat resistant plate with the foil that will fit inside the skillet allowing steam to escape, like a salad plate, and then put my brick on top of that. The weight is better distributed. I also will add fresh herbs and garlic directly to the pan with a little EVOOm maybe a tsp. and let it all caramelize together.

        1. I've been curious about this one too. What is the advantage of cooking the chicken in this method. I typically use the Zuni method for roasting my chickens, and love that. Is this faster, or just more fun?

          2 Replies
          1. re: egbluesuede

            It is the way the chicken skin gets all carmely and crisp. Very diferent from roast chicken.

            1. re: egbluesuede

              I think that it cooks faster this way too because the backbone is taken out and the whole chicken is flattened.

            2. I use a dash of red pepper flake and rosemary salt ,pepper, lemon juice evoo.Marinate the chicken over night the longer the better. One aluminum wraped brick in enough. Serve on a bed of arugla dress in lemon and olive oil.

              1. American Test Kitchens has a recipe for oven chicken with potatoes. I don't have it. Maybe someone else does and can pop it up for you.

                1. Thanks for all your replies, I really appreciate it. But now I'm a bit confused. I've looked at a few recipes and some turn the bird in the cooking process and some don't. Does this matter? Does keeping it skin side down throughout risk burning the skin or is keeping it skin side down vital to a crispy, golden result?

                  Some recipes turn the bird and add potatoes underneath to roast and absorb the juices. That sounds good. Any comments or thoughts? Thanks again everyone.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: curiousgeo

                    I've never cooked one in a cast iron skillet but I have outdoors on the grill under a brick. The recipe I use (from Raichlin) tuns the bird. I would think the skin would possibly burn or get soggy with grease if it's cooked skin side down throughout the whole process.

                    And by all means marinate overnight. One hour is a waste of time, really.

                    1. re: curiousgeo

                      You should brown it on both sides