This skillet chicken dish calls for the backbone to be removed from the chicken so that it lays flat (known as "butterflying"). Doing so allows the chicken to cook quicker and more evenly. Now working with raw poultry isn't one of my favorite things to do so I had my butcher do the bone removal. (I've done it before and it's not difficult, just cut out the back bone with a sharp knife or poultry shears.)
This chicken was very easy to put together, with very little mess, which is great for a busy work night. While it baked I made a veggie and some rice. I also drank a little wine as the recipe only calls for 1/2 cup of white wine. No need in wasting the rest of the bottle! The beauty of this dish is the luscious lemon-wine sauce that develops. It's great not only drizzled over the chicken, but I also drizzled it on my sides. My Hubby kept dipping his bread in the skillet!
If you like roast chicken this is a good dish to have in your repertoire.
Skillet-Roasted Lemon Chicken
2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
1 teaspoon whole fennel seeds
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup good olive oil
1 lemon, halved and sliced 1/4 inch thick
1 yellow onion, halved and sliced 1/4 inch thick
2 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 (4-pound) chicken, backbone removed and butterflied
1/2 cup dry white wine, such as Pinot Grigio
Juice of 1 lemon
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
Place the thyme, fennel seeds, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper in a mini food processor and process until ground. Pour the olive oil into a small glass measuring cup, stir in the herb mixture, and set aside.
Distribute the lemon slices in a 12-inch cast-iron skillet and distribute the onion and garlic on top. Place the chicken, skin side down, on top of the onion and brush with about half the oil and herb mixture. Turn the chicken skin side up, pat it dry with paper towels (very important!) and brush it all over with the rest of the oil and herb mixture.
Roast the chicken for 30 minutes. Pour the wine into the pan (not on the chicken!) and roast for another 10 to 15 minutes, until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast registers 155-160 degrees.
Remove the chicken from the oven, sprinkle it with the lemon juice, cover the skillet tightly with aluminum foil, and allow to rest for 10 to 15 minutes. Cut the chicken into quarters or eighths, sprinkle with salt, and serve hot with the pan juices, cooked lemon, and onion.
|The recipe calls for the spices to be ground in a mini food processor. I have a coffee grinder that I use for spice grinding. Using it means I don't have to wash the mini food processor. I get tired of washing dishes!|