Amazingly tasty. Quick-cooking. Easy to do.
When you cut out the backbone from a whole chicken you can then lay it flat on your roasting pan. It’s called “spatchcock” and/or butterflied. What’s the benefits? Chicken cooks perfectly evenly. Dark meat cooks at same rate as light meat. All the skin crisps. AND it cooks faster than when it’s left whole.
How to do? Place the whole chicken on a work surface breast side down. Using a pair of kitchen shears, cut along one side of the backbone. Then cut along the other side of the backbone until you can remove it. (Save it to make stock later — you can freeze it.) Flip over the chicken and splay out the legs and thighs. It will naturally lay flat. You can also break the breastbone so the breast lays flat, but not necessary. I usually don’t.
The rice addition takes advantage of the juices from the chicken. This adds so much flavor to the rice (especially mixed with the roasted onion slices).
Here’s how I roast it (with rice!):
1. Line a sheet pan/roasting pan with foil (for quicker cleanup).
2. Coat with a few tablespoons of olive oil.
3. Lay out the spatchcock chicken. (Place lemon slices and/or herbs under the chicken.)
4. Sprinkle a cup of rice (uncooked) around the pan. Sprinkle 1 or 2 sliced onions around the rice.
5. Season all with salt & pepper. Drizzle all with olive oil.
6. Add 1 cup to 1 and a half cups of water on & around the rice.
7. Roast in 375 degree F. oven for 30 minutes. Check if rice has absorbed water. Add another cup of water, still through the rice a little. Cook another 15-30 minutes until instant read thermometer reads 165 in chicken, and rice is tender.
8. Cut up chicken in pieces. Lately, I’ve been cutting the breast meat into slices like you do with turkey. You get so much more meat to serve that way! Enjoy!