Ever “Spatchcock” a Chicken?

Let’s face it – any chance I get, I love to use the word Spatchcock.  Apparently you can also say ‘spattlecock’, although it just doesn’t roll of the tongue quite as funny.

To ‘spatchcock’ a chicken – or poultry of any variety – simply means to remove / cut out the back bone.  This allows you to flatten the chicken on a grill, cut the breasts down the middle easily, and reach under the breast and thigh skin more easily to rub the meat prior to grilling.


Final step…crisp up that skin!

I usually use a poultry shears, and just cut out those pesky back bones.  On Memorial Day weekend, I did up a rub of kosher salt, cracked black pepper, smoked paprika, garlic powder, onion powder and a bit of red pepper.  Rub under the skin to get the legs, thighs and breasts – then rub the skin as well.  Then run the inside of your freshly flattened birds and you’re ready for the grill.

I did two 5 or 6 pound birds side by side on my small grill.  First, put them skin up on the grill for about 20 to 25 mins, cover down, at about 400 degrees.  Then flip em and give the skin a good 10 min browning.  Then back over for 20 to 25 more and then one final flip for another 5 or 10 skin browning.  About an hour and 15 mins in total.  PERFECT.

A great way to celebrate when Foster Farms Whole Chickens are on sale for 88 cents a pound.  That was 10 bucks and a weeks worth of lunches!

Oh, and did I mention that I got to Spatchcock the chickens…?  Hee Hee…never gets old!


BBQ Pork Spare Ribs Time!

Whenever Vallarta Supermarkets has pork spare ribs on sale, I buy them.  Three reasons:  one, they are always fresh – never frozen.  Two, they will cut them in any configuration you want right there on the spot – large rack, small rack, 1/2 size ribs etc.  And three, $1.99/pound!!  End of story!

Generally I do a traditional Texas style rub.  This consists of Brown Sugar, Smoked Paprika, Two Chile Powders – one mild and a dash of a super hot one made by my brother-in-law David, garlic powder, onion powder, kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper.  I rub it liberally all over both sides of the rack about 4 to 6 hours before I grill, and then I wrap up the rack tightly in plastic wrap and put it in the fridge.ribs2new

Since I live in a condo, I don’t have a real smoker.  I use a gas grill, burners on super low so the heat never gets over 300, and go for 2 to 2 1/2 hours.

No smoke rings, but delicious, tender, juicy ribs.  Sometimes I slice the meat off the bones and serve them inside corn tortillas – also from Vallarta – with a bit of onion, cilantro and sour cream.  No BBQ sauce needed – that rub does everything you need it to do!

Happy Summer!!