Butterflied roast chicken with lemon and rosemary

Butterflied roast chicken with lemon and rosemary

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About this recipe: Want to cook whole chicken quicker and more evenly? Remove the backbone with a knife or kitchen scissors to flatten the chicken. The breast meat doesn't dry out, the dark meat is tender and juicy, and there's lots of crispy golden skin to enjoy. Here, it's simply roasted with lemon and rosemary.


Serves: 6 

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, or as needed
  • 1 (1.3kg) whole chicken, backbone removed
  • coarse sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 lemon, sliced into rounds
  • 4 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 120ml white wine or chicken stock

Prep:10min  ›  Cook:50min  ›  Ready in:1hr 

  1. Preheat oven to 200 C / Gas 6. Line a rimmed baking tray with foil. Place a rack on top of foil.
  2. Rub olive oil on both sides of chicken and generously season with salt and black pepper. Arrange lemon slices and rosemary on the rack and place chicken, skin-side up, onto the rack.
  3. Roast in the preheated oven until no longer pink at the bone and the juices run clear, 45 to 55 minutes.
  4. Transfer chicken to a serving platter and tent a piece of foil over it. Discard lemon and rosemary and remove rack.
  5. Pour wine or chicken stock into the baking tray and gently loosen the bits of food in the pan with a wooden spoon, being careful not to tear the foil. Strain the juices into a saucepan and bring to the boil; cook until sauce is slightly reduced, about 5 minutes. Spoon sauce over chicken.


A whole butterflied chicken cooks really well and evenly on the bbq.

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