Friday, June 10, 2011

Grilled Mustard-Lemon Chicken

4 Meyer lemons, 2 zested and juiced and 2 halved
1 cup Dijon mustard
2 T finely chopped rosemary leaves
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 (3-pound) chickens, backbone removed and split in 1/2
extra virgin olive oil
kosher salt

Preparing the chicken:
Combine the lemon juice, zest, mustard, rosemary and crushed red pepper in a small bowl. Add 1 to 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the mustard mixture to loosen it. Paint this mixture generously all over the chicken and let sit for up to 2 hours at room temperature or overnight in the refrigerator. If you have any of the mustard mixture left over, save it for repainting while the chicken is cooking.

Preheat the grill to medium; the chicken should cook on the grill as long as possible without burning to develop crispy skin. Run an oiled towel over a cleaned grill.

Season the chicken lightly with salt and arrange gently on the grill. If there are flare-ups, move the chicken out of the way. Put the lemon halves, cut side down, on the grill also and do not disturb until they look brown and caramelized.

Once the chicken has started to get brown and crispy and has developed grill marks in one direction, rotate the chicken a quarter turn in the other direction. The chicken should cook on the skin side for 10 to 12 minutes and then get turned over and cooked for the same amount of time. If there is any of the mustard mixture left over, the remainder can be used to paint the skin of the chicken once the chicken has been turned over. (If you are using the remainder of the mustard mix, be sure to give it plenty of time to cook again as it will have touched raw chicken. If not sure, skip this step.)

During the cooking time, close the grill to allow the heat to cook from all directions. If grilling indoors, the chicken can be transferred to a preheated 375 degree F oven to finish cooking once the grill marks have been established.

The chicken is done when the juices run clear when the pricked in the thickest part of the thigh. Remove the chicken from the grill to a serving platter and serve with the grilled lemon halves. Squeeze the grilled lemon over the chicken before eating.

Serves 4


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