I LOVE a good BBQ! I’m always thinking up new marinades and flavours to tickle my taste buds.
Here I have made a recipe which will give you a delicious flavour of garlic, lemon, tarragon and chili, which, in my opinion, enhance the chicken flavour and keep it very moist indeed. Now you can choose your favourite herbs to add, such as rosemary, oregano, etc. The choice is yours! But for me, lemon, garlic and tarragon really do compliment each other and go perfectly with chicken. Here I have used chili amounts which are mild, more for flavour than ‘heat’, so this recipe is not spicy hot .
You can also use this preparation method to cook chicken in the oven, turns out moist and really tasty!
4 1/2 lb or 2 Kg Whole Chicken
4 cloves garlic chopped finely or crushed
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 teaspoon Salt
1 Teaspoon Pepper
2 Teaspoons mild chili pepper seeds (optional)
1 -2 Tablespoons Dried Tarragon
**Please note, if using a larger chicken, cook times will be a little longer and will require a pre cook in the oven for 20 minutes.
1. First of all we need to prepare the chicken. Here I will show you how to cut the whole chicken and flatten it ready for the marinade. if you know how to do this please skip this and move to the marinade instructions below.
You need a sharp knife or meat cutting scissors and a chopping board. See the photos below:
Step 1 : Stand the chicken up on so the wings are sitting on the board. Cut straight down the middle.
Step 2 : Open out the chicken and see where my finger is pointing in the photo, you will see a white cartilage, cut straight through that all the way along the chicken lengthways.
Step 3 : Cut all the way right through the chicken.
Step 4. Once the chicken has been halved place on the board skin side up, and using the flat side of your knife push down until it is flattened a little. If you don’t have a suitable knife place the chicken in a zip lock bag and use the base of a heavy saucepan and push down flattening the chicken. You may have to exert a little pressure to push, or find someone with some strong muscles!
Step 5. Once flattened, using your sharp knife, run deep slashes into your chicken, pay particular attention to the thicker parts of the meat as this will take longer to cook if there are no slits in it. The slits help with the cooking and also the marinade to penetrate the meat.
If you are using a chicken larger than the weight stated above, place the chicken in an oven proof pan, otherwise, a container large enough to spread the chicken
Add all the ingredients to the chicken, and with the lemon, cut in half first, squeeze the juice all over the chicken the slice up the used lemon and add it to the chicken.
Use your hands to rub everything together, and then place skin side down in the container.
Cover and leave to marinade in the fridge for 30 minutes minimum, 2 hours is the best amount of time.
Once the chicken has marinated, place on the grill / BBQ and turn frequently until the juices run clear from the thickest part of the chicken meat (the breast and thick part of the legs).
For larger chickens, place in a preheated oven, at 190 C / 375 F Gas 5, covered with aluminium foil for 25 minutes and then place on the grill / BBQ and cook as normal, or continue cooking in the oven until cooked if you are not grilling.