Succulent Whole BBQ Chicken
Summer for me equals the bbq and that’s how I love cooking my chickens - whole, cut in half. Here are a few essential tricks to perfect it. I use a good pair of kitchen shears to remove the back bone, although a good heavy sharp knife will also do the trick. You will need to have enough room on your grill to use an indirect method, or the chicken will burn before cooking all the way through.
1 3-to-4 pound chicken, patted dry
Sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
2 tbsp. minced fresh rosemary (25 ml)
2 tsp. smoked paprika (5 ml)
1 tbsp. Dijon mustard (15 ml)
2 - 3 tbsp. olive oil (25-45 ml)
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tsp. Worchestershire sauce (5 ml)
Preheat BBQ to high
Lay the chicken down on plastic board, breast side down. With kitchen shears, cut to the right of back bone, all the way up the chicken. Repeat on opposite side, removing back bone completely. Flip the chicken over and press down to break wish bone. With a sharp knife cut along the centre of chicken breast, pressing all the way down to cut chicken in half. Season it with salt and pepper on both sides. Transfer to a medium roasting pan.
In a bowl, mix together the rosemary, paprika, mustard, olive oil, lemon juice, zest and Worchestershire sauce. Whisk to fully blend. Pour this mixture over both sides of the chicken, rubbing in thoroughly with hands. Reserve any that falls into pan and brush on while chicken is roasting.
Scrub grill very well with brush and oil to prevent sticking. With grill on high, place chicken halves, breast side down, on hot grill for 1 minute, just to until grill marks appear. Immediately flip chicken halves over, turn off burners directly under chicken and reduce other burners to low and close lid. You are aiming for a consistent roasting temperature of between 300 - 325°. Brush occasionally with any remaining drippings.
After about 20 - 25 minutes, chickens should be deep golden brown. Turn on direct burners to low, for 5 minutes, just to fully cook the chicken. A thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh should read 170°. Remove and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.