POLLO ALLA TUSCANO

(Tuscan Chicken) By Gloria De Maria

Ingredients:

  • 1 3 1/2 - 4 lb organic chicken (I use Trader Joe's organic, BRINED whole chicken – juicy and delicious)
  • Sea Salt
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 tsp grated lemon zest (2 lemons)
  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 3 to 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp minced fresh rosemary
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 lemons, sliced
  • Black oil-cured olives

Instructions:

To butterfly the chicken, lay it breast side down on a cutting board. Using very sharp kitchen shears, cut alongside the backbone on both sides and remove it. The chicken should now be able to lay flat.

Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper on all sides.

In a pan or ceramic baking dish, large enough to hold the flattened chicken, combine olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, rosemary, and black pepper. Add the chicken to the marinade. Using a basting brush, brush the chicken with the marinade. At this point, the chicken may be covered with plastic wrap, and placed in the refrigerator overnight. The next morning, turn the chicken over, cover it again, and refrigerate until you are ready to begin cooking. Remove the chicken from the refrigerator 2 hours before cooking to allow it to come to room temperature.

Preheat the oven broiler to high heat.

Uncover and turn the chicken, breast side down, then place it in the preheated oven. Watch closely; when the chicken is just starting to brown, carefully turn the chicken over (breast side up), using oven gloves and tongs, and let the other side brown slightly. Remove the chicken from the oven and reset the oven temperature to bake at 375.

Place the lemon slices around the chicken and scatter the olives around the pan then put the chicken back into the oven. Check the chicken's internal temperature at in about 45 minutes. An internal temperature of 165 degrees means the chicken is fully cooked, so leave it in and continue checking the temperature until it reaches 165. When the chicken is fully cooked, its juices will run clear when you cut into the leg with the tip of a sharp knife and the skin should be a golden brown. Remove the chicken from the pan and cover it with aluminum foil. Allow it to rest for 5 minutes.

Cut the chicken into quarters, sprinkle with additional salt, and serve surrounded by the roasted lemons and black olives.

Enjoy!