"Toaded" Grilled Chicken with Mustard

Grilled “Toaded” Chicken with Mustard

I’m a HUGE fan of the food blog “What Katie Ate”, the award winning food blog written by Australian Katie Quinn Davies. Actually, my husband and I both are. She has, in our opinion, some of the best food photography around! Katie’s brilliant images prove that a food blogger does NOT have to be on WordPress to have a food blog with a spectacular appearance, and a high number of readers.

(Drat! There goes my excuse!)

A few months ago, Katie, who was working on her cookbook, asked for feedback on what her readers look for in a cookbook, and I offered my input.

Are you curious as to what I said, by the way? High on my list of things I look for in a great cookbook is a clean layout and a clearly legible font.  I don’t want to have to squint to read my recipe. And frankly, if a cookbook isn’t user friendly in regard to being physically easy to read, I won’t use it.

So, anyway, to encourage her readers to leave comments, Katie offered a giveaway for a barbecue cookbook by one of her favorite cookbook authors, French chef and resturanteur Stéphane Reynaud. The book is entitled Stephane Reynaud’s Barbecue. Katie drew my name out of the hat, and I won the cookbook! Now, mind you, my cookbook was making its way to me via Australia, Katie’s native land. (So it had a prettier cover than the American version!) And it took its time getting here from down undah, but finally, my cookbook arrived last week, complete with a few extra GORGEOUS Australian gourmet cooking magazines that Katie threw in, for fun. (She’s a featured contributor to the Australian gourmet food magazine, “Delicious”, you know!)

Anyway, to thank sweet Katie, I thought I would try a dish from my brand new cookbook, and share it with you. I really made very few changes in the recipe, with only two exceptions. First, I  substituted a normal store bought chicken that I had in the freezer for the “beautiful free range chicken” that Reynaud’s recipe calls for. Now, if you HAVE a beautiful free range chicken, I have no doubt it would do nothing BUT enhance this already delicious recipe, so by all means, use a free range chicken if you can.

The other change I made to the recipe was to add a teaspoon of salt to the “marinade”. I’ve learned through my Ginger Roast Chicken recipe the scientific reason that salting meat (chicken) a day before you use it really, really works., and Reynaud’s recipe did not call for salt in the marinade. (While salt initially draws water from the cells, if you leave it on long enough, it forms a brine with that water, which then gets drawn deep back inside the chicken, making the meat both more flavorful and more tender. So salt your chickens in advance, kids!)

He calls it “Toaded” chicken, because to grill it evenly, you squash it “like a toad”. Those wacky Frenchmen!

Kind of looks like a chia pet…but, the parsley and the onions together add so much! DELICIOUS and JUICY!

“Toaded” Grilled Chicken with Mustard

Marinating Time: 24 hours
Cooking time: 45 minutes over gentle heat

Ingredients:

1 chicken
salt and pepper
1 bunch of flat leaf parsley
1 bunch of spring onions

Marinade: 

1 t. salt
6 garlic cloves
1/4 c. Dijon mustard
1 T. honey
1 t. dried oregano
2 T. olive oil

Preparation:

Cut open the breast side of the chicken and flatten it out by pressing down hard (it will then look somewhat like a large toad!).
For the marinade, peel and chop the garlic. Combine all of the marinade ingredients: salt, garlic, mustard, honey, oregano and olive oil.
Starting at the neck cavity opening, gently slide your fingers between the skin and the muscle tissue of the chicken, loosening the skin at the bottom of the breast and around the thighs
Lay the chicken down in a dish, spread with the marinade on both sides of the exterior of the skin, as well as under the loosened skin, and cover the bird with plastic wrap.  Chill for 24 hours.
Place the chicken over gentle heat, and cook it for 45 minutes, turning it from time to time.
Once the chicken is cooked (165º), scatter with chopped parsley and spring onions and cover with foil for 2 minutes. Serve immediately.

This recipe is perfect for grilling season. I’m hoping to supply you with more great grilling recipes soon, as well as another wine tutorial for wines that go exceptionally well with grilled foods in the coming summer months, so stay tuned!


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