Spatchcock Chicken and Asparagus
Featured in Season 2, Episode 1
Cook time: Approximately 60 – 65 minutes
- 1 whole chicken, 3-4 lbs
- 6 tbsp unsalted butter at room temperature
- 1 lb fresh asparagus, ends trimmed
- kosher salt
- black pepper
- olive oil
Place a cast-iron skillet in the oven and preheat to 400°. Pat the chicken dry, trim off any excess skin from the bottom and top of the cavity, and set on a cutting board, breast side down.
Position the bird so the bottom of the backbone is closest to you. Using very sharp scissors, cut along both sides of the backbone to the neck, removing the backbone entirely (reserving for a future use). Turn the bird breast side up and use the heels of your hands to press down firmly along the center of the breasts, cracking the breastbone and flattening the chicken as much as possible.
At the top of each breast, use your fingers to gently separate the skin from the meat, creating a little pocket. Do the same at the top of each thigh. Place one tbsp of butter inside each pocket and massage the exterior of the skin to spread the butter out underneath the skin. Rub the remaining two tbsp of butter over the exterior of the bird. Season liberally with salt and pepper.
Remove the cast-iron skillet from the oven and transfer the chicken to the pan, skin side down, ensuring as much contact with the skillet as possible. Season the underside of the bird liberally with salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil. Transfer to the oven and roast for 40 mins. Carefully flip the chicken over and roast, skin side up, for an additional 10 mins. Remove from the oven and transfer the chicken to a cutting board. Rest for 10 mins before carving.
While the chicken is resting, add the asparagus directly to the hot skillet and toss to coat in the drippings. Return to the 400° oven and roast for 10-15 mins, until tender and beginning to brown. Serve alongside spatchcocked chicken and — for even more delicious results — top the asparagus with poached eggs and hollandaise sauce.