Confession time. Outside of major holidays, or incredibly special days, I have a hard time planning meals well in advance. Someone who happens to live under this roof might even declare my planning of any meal is hard. This charge, however, I deny. My flag day meals are always planned weeks in advance.
Truthfully, it is only those big events I really hunker down for and plan out days, if not weeks, ahead. This past Christmas is a great example.
The lack of marinades in my writing is an unintended consequence of this whole planning thing. My inspiration for dinner typically comes the day of. This works fine for the one or two hour marinade, but unless we are talking fish, I never feel those "fast" marinades amount to much. This recipe, for Chicken in Red Wine, reminds me of two things: one, marinades need time to to marinade…like at least a day, and two, I need to plan them more often.
Grilled Chicken in Red Wine
Adapted from Weber's Real Grilling
1 large onion, quartered
6 large garlic cloves
1 tin anchovy filets, drained
Extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup fresh Italian parsley
1/4 cup fresh rosemary leaves
Salt & pepper
1 bottle of dry red wine
1 whole chicken 4-5 pounds
Place the onion, garlic, anchovies...
Yes, anchovies….1/2 cup of oil, parsley, rosemary, and 1 teaspoon of both salt and pepper, into a food processor. Process until the onion is finely chopped.
Prep the chicken
The chicken is grilled split, so in order to get there, a few alterations need to be made.
Remove the chicken backbone, just like in the beginning steps of spatchcocking.
Using poultry shears, cut up one side of the chicken's backbone and then,
cut up the other until the backbone can be removed.
Spread the chicken open like a book.
Remove the wing tips.
The next step is to split the chicken. With a sharp knife, cut down one side of the breast bone, separating the bird in two.
Then, repeat the same process on the other piece of chicken and completely remove the bone.
In order to maximize a marinade, I use a vacuum sealer…which, I happened to acquire over the holidays. I absolutely love it. The FoodSaver 3860 has both the traditional sealer mechanism, as well as an accessory port sealer for canisters. The accessory port works with a marinade container and has a marinade function, that pulses over time to pull the marinade into the meat. Although I like my FoodSaver, the Weston Sealer, owned by my friend Gregg, is out of this world.
For larger cuts, like this chicken recipe, I make my own vacuum bag.
No matter what type of bag you are using, add the marinade, chicken, and pour in the wine. Refrigerate for 24 hours.
In this case, once everything was added, I vacuum sealed the bag shut.
Deprived of oxygen and packed full of wine, the bag was off to the fridge to work its magic.
The Next Day...
Well, I planned the meal in advance, but I certainly didn't plan the weather.
The sunset was beautiful.
The 14 degrees Fahrenheit on the thermometer was not.
No worries, just wear a hat.
Remove the chicken from the marinade and pat dry. The marinade should be discarded. Once the chicken is dry, rub with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Prep the grill for medium direct and indirect heat. Because of the weather, I passed on firing up charcoal and went right to the Summit. For indirect and direct heat, I fired up burners 1, 2, and 6 and left 3, 4 and 5 off.
With the grill at proper temp, about 350 F, cook the chicken skin side up over indirect heat for approximately 40-50 minutes.
For crispier skin, flip the chicken over and grill over direct heat for another 5 to 10 minutes. Once done, remove from the grill. Allow to rest a few minutes, then carve and serve.
I have to say, this was absolutely incredible. The long vacuum sealed marinade worked like a champ, as every bite was full of flavor. This dish was easy to make. All it took was a little planning. Something I need to work on.