Spatchcock Piri Piri Chicken
1 chicken (about 1½ kg/3lb 5oz)
4 red chillies, chopped (deseeded if you don’t like it too spicy)
3 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tsp sweet paprika
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 tbsp chopped parsley
2 tbsp olive oil
lemon wedges and Tabasco sauce (optional), to serve
- To spatchcock the chicken, flip it over so the backbone is facing you. Using a sturdy pair of kitchen scissors or poultry scissors, cut down either side of the backbone, then discard. Turn the chicken over and push down firmly on the breastbone to flatten out the bird. Make a few slashes in each leg joint. You can watch a video showing how to spatchcock a chicken in the How To Cook section of the website).
- Put the chillies and garlic in a food processor with a good pinch of salt, or use a pestle and mortar. Blend to a paste, then add the paprika, vinegar, parsley and olive oil. Mix well, then smear over the chicken. Leave to marinate for at least 1 hr or overnight if possible. Can be frozen at this stage.
- Fire up the barbecue. When the flames have died down, place the chicken on the centre of the barbecue, skin-side down, and cook for 15-20 mins until nicely charred. Flip the chicken over and continue cooking for another 5-15 mins until cooked through. Check that the juices run clear, as the heat of every barbecue will vary. To cook in the oven, heat to 200C/180C fan/gas 6 and cook for 35-40 mins on a baking tray. To char the skin, grill for a further 5-10 mins. Serve with lemon wedges, and Tabasco if you like it hot.