Roast Spatchcock Chicken with Fenugreek Spice Rub

spatchcock chicken

I love a good roast chicken—and who doesn't!? I can honestly say it was always my favorite meal growing up. But after a while it does get boring, especially if you're using the same seasoning day in and day out. What makes cooking fun is that you can experiment—you're allowed to—I encourage it! And for this recipe I've got a very nice Middle Eastern-inspired spice rub featuring fenugreek leaves for a really unique and savory flavor.

Beyond varying the seasoning of your chicken, do you ever wish it would just roast faster? I mean the last thing you want to be doing is staring at the oven door for hours waiting for it to be done, as if the bird would suddenly jump up and announce: "I have reached my optimal level of doneness." Well, there is a trick for shortening the cook time. Sorry, I don't know of a trick to make the bird talk, but I think this butchering technique will surely make up for that.

It's called spatchcocking, which involves removing a bird's spine and sometimes its breastbone and wing tips. The etymology behind this word refers to dispatching a cock."So, we can assume it may have been commonly used on cocks, possibly once they were no longer fit for service in the hen house. But this technique can be used on any type of poultry, most importantly chicken!

Watch how this recipe is prepared on my YouTube channel.

Roast Spatchcock Chicken with Fenugreek Spice Rub

1 whole chicken (about 3 to 3-1/2 pounds)
fine sea salt
2 teaspoons sweet paprika
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon granulated garlic
2 tablespoons dried fenugreek leaves
freshly ground black pepper
olive oil

Clean the chicken. With a sharp knife or poultry shears, remove the back bone and, optionally, the wing tips. Lay the bird out skin-side up, and press on the breast firmly in order to break the breastbone. The breastbone can re removed, or cut open on either side to ensure the bird lays flat. Pat the chicken dry on all sides. Generously season the bird with salt. Leave it in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours up to overnight for the best flavor. Before roasting, leave the chicken at room temperature for an hour. (If you're in a rush, leave the bird at room temperature for an hour after salting and then roast it.)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F, on the convection setting if possible. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil.

Make the spice rub by combining both paprikas, cumin, coriander, garlic powder, fenugreek leaves, and as much pepper as you like.
Pat the chicken dry of any moisture. Generously oil it all over.

Sprinkle on the spice rub, making sure the bird is fully covered without rubbing the spice mixture into the bird.

Transfer the chicken to the prepared roasting pan and then the preheated oven. Roast for about 1 hour to 1 hour and 20 minutes or until the internal temperature of the breast reaches 165 degrees F and the thickest part of the thigh reaches 200 degrees F. Let it rest for 15 to 20 minutes before carving and serving. Yield: 4 servings.


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