Glen Frey did a great job with ‘The Heat Is On’. I find it hard to imagine that I could raise any enthusiasm for the opposite. Imagine a song called ‘The Heat Is Off’. I had received my instructions from Texas (more of that here) and I was going to cook a pretty tongue melting chili concoction for my invited family guests. They were going to enjoy one of the hottest dishes I have ever created. It was going to be hot and great. For sure, the heat was on! That was until I got an early morning call from my mother.
Mum was telling me about the Norwegian branch of the family, who were dining with us that evening.“You know that they don’t like ‘hot’ things. Too much chili will cause them problems.” With those few words, my excellent menu went out the window. You may think me spineless for giving up my plan but, we Irish think first of our guests. I had to improvise and do something else with the chicken. I had to do it without thought of chili. The first thing I did was cut the backbone out of the chicken. That’s a spineless start. That’s how my opening picture above is not of mixed chilis and other good things as I had planned. Sorry about that. The second picture is not much better. However, it is instructional.
I had better let you know what I am doing. This time, it’s Coriander and Lime Chicken. The ingredients include;
- 1 free range chicken
- 3 red onions
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 3 limes
- 1 tablespoon of mixed peppercorns
- 1 big handful of coriander, including the stalks
Finish spatchcocking the chicken by pressing down on the breast of the bird once the backbone is removed.
When it is flattened, skewer it diagonally to hold things together. Chop the onion, zest one of the limes.
Side note of stupidity: Eldest daughter and boyfriend have decided to turn ‘Spatchcock’ into a term of abuse. The love it as calling somebody a ‘silly spatchcock’ sounds very insulting. They assure me it only refers to them being a “spineless chicken”. Yeah, right.
Next blitz the onions in a food processor. Then grind the peppercorns and garlic in a pestel and mortar.
Mix this with the onion, juice of two limes and zest of one.
Rub this all over the chicken and leave it in the fridge for a few hours.
The barbecue should be well heated and turned down to minimum. Close the lid and go and do something else for 20 minutes. Return and turn the chicken over. The skewers earn their keep at this stage.
After another fifteen to twenty minutes, turn it again and squeeze the juice of the remaining lime over the chicken.
Roughly chop the coriander and sprinkle it on top of the chicken. Close the lid on the barbecue, turn it off and let the coriander wilt for ten minutes.
Take it off and let it rest for a few minutes before chopping it into generous bite sized pieces.
I served it with various salad ingredients and a nice guacamole. Sadly, the hoard were hungry and I only got a chance to shoot one picture of the sliced chicken.
One last thing. My barbecue goes down to a fairly low heat. With that in mind, if you are doing this, you need to ensure that the chicken is cooked through but not overcooked. You are on your own with that one. I did get a chance to fire things up with the chilis later in our Texas Chili Challenge but, we had to keep things a little cooler for the Northerners with Coriander and Lime Chicken. Delicious. Even those Texas Chiliheads would like it, I’m sure.