Nigella Lawson's butterflied chicken
Recipe created by Nigella Lawson
Simple and savory, this recipe is great for a busy family or those who just don't like to fuss over dinner.
Servings: Makes 4–6 servings
  • 1 butterflied chicken (approx. 3 1/2 to 4 lbs)
  • 3 long sprigs fresh rosemary
  • Juice of 1 lemon , with more lemons to serve
  • 1 red onion
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • Maldon or other sea salt
Put chicken into a large freezer bag. Pull the waxily aromatic needles off two of the sprigs of rosemary and drop them on top.

Cut a lemon in half and squeeze juice into the bag, chucking the rinds in the bag afterwards, too. Pour in olive oil and then tie bag. (Or vacuum seal, if possible.) Give it a good squeeze around the edges before sitting in the refrigerator.

Marinate chicken for a couple of hours, or overnight—even a couple of days.

Preheat oven to 425°. Once chicken is at room temperature, lay chicken (skin side up) along with lemon rinds and onion pieces, on a foil-lined pan. Add remaining sprig of rosemary torn into a few pieces and tuck into leg and breast of chicken.

Cook for 45 minutes. The chicken should now be crisp-skinned and tender within. Take the pan out and cut chicken into four pieces. Arrange on a plate along with onion bits.

Pour over any syrupy golden juices from the pan and sprinkle generously with sea salt. Cut a lemon or two into quarters and scatter these clumpily about the chicken.

Recommended technique: For a spicier option, brush the skin of the butterflied bird with some sambal oelek (hot, sharp chili paste) loosened with a little vegetable oil.


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