I’ve been accused more than a few times that some of what I do here isn’t reproducible in their kitchen. I feel kinda bad because most of what I do is quite simple, straight forward and doesn’t require rocket science. I think it was Shannon that tried this Pressed Chicken and the first time was a complete disaster. Meathead attempted the salt marinated chicken and ended up throwing it away, so sad.
What to do, what to do? Tinker and Tanker knew what to do, and they did it!
Do it again to make sure you didn’t mislead anyone, that’s what. I apologize for the images, they aren’t quite up to snuff, snapshots baby. I decided to cook the chicken this way at the very last moment. I noticed I still had a good load of fresh bacon fat from the previous night and decided that maybe frying a pressed chicken in this bacon fat would be a good idea. What do you think about that?
First off you need to spatchcock your chicken, remove the back and crack the breast bone so it lays flat. Season boffe sides. Try not to season the skin on the outside with anything that might burn and taste nasty. This might be a rub made with sugar or herbs. Yes, as you can see I used fresh thyme, I won’t be next time. Just under the skin, that’ll work fine. Search around your kitchen for heavy stuff, things you can pile on the chicken.
Put a few tablespoons of bacon drippings in your cast iron pan. You want enough to coat and some to swirl. Remember, cast iron loves pork fat! Get this hot enough so some wafts of smoke are released. Ever so carefully lower chicken, SKIN SIDE DOWN in to the skillet with the hot fat, carefully now. While burns and scares look really cool, they hurt a lot initially.
The critical part here is that you want a heavy duty lid of some kind to cover the chicken. Just large enough to leave a little venting room around the edges. I used a lid from a camp style dutch oven. At this point, start piling some things on here, a few heavy pans will do nicely. Set to medium heat and relax for 25 to 30 minutes, no more.
And that is pretty much that. No flipping, turning or poking. Consider it done.
How does it taste? The chicken flavors of the meat and skin are more pronounced than a roasted chicky. And the skin over the breast and thigh portions are crunchy. Not crispy, crunchy. Chicken crunch is a wonderful thing, you’ll see.
What did I forget to do? Preheat the cast iron lid in a hot oven so it would help cook the chicken a little. Did anyone care? Nope.
Here is a link to my last entry on Pressed Chicken.
They just can’t follow directions.
Did you brine it? Looks pretty darn tasty.
Well, yeah. But I felt bad nonetheless, I’m going for 100% success.
Naw, didn’t brine it. That would have been a nice addition, for sure. But it was a during the week meal with very little time to get things going and prepared. The chicken went on around 5:30 and we were seated at the table EATING just after 6. Then everyone was back up and out playing.
I did forget to mention I made a kickass gravy. Standard issue, but added two dollups of creme fraiche. That gave it the knee up it needed to make it good for anything.
Man, that’s one simply bird. And tasty, I’m guessing.
Could you just leave the lid in the skillet as it’s heating up, if you wanted to get it hot? Might be easier than firing up the oven, I do that with cast iron skillets at home when I’m making Cuban sandwiches.
Spatchcock….why do I smirk everytime I hear that word? It sounds a bit Monty Python.
You could leave the lid in for sure. But I had a fair amount of bacon fat lolling about in the pan and didn’t want to drap the smoked under the lid. Actually, I could have just thrown the lid on a burner for a while, that would have surely done it. You bet.
Yeah, me too. Spatchcock. See?
Yep, you betcha. I meant before you put the fat in, but it’s all good, buddy.