Please allow me to introduce myself, I’m a chicken of wealth and taste…It’s as tho Mick was singing about spicy grilled chicken all along. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not one to endorse a goat-headed, trident wielding, fire breathing demon from the depths of hell on a day to day basis, but today’s an exception. This traditional dish of Lazio, home to such places as the Vatican, is sinfully delicious with it’s red-hot attire, titillating burn and torturous pressure. The irony is equally delicious, no? It’s name foreshadows the inevitable burn and futile ability to stop eating, making for a gluttonous scene no matter the company. With that, I’ll paraphrase Mick again: Please to meet you, hope you guess my name…
Pollo Al Diavolo (Chicken Devil’s Style)
1lb-2lb Whole Chicken (butterflied, or “Spatchcocked”)
1tb Chile Flakes
1tb Spicy Pimenton or Paprika
1tb Dried Oregano
1tb Coarse Cracked Black Pepper
1tb Coarse Salt
Fittingly, the fire is the most important part of this recipe so crank your grill up to med-high heat as you prep.
Ask your butcher to Spatchcock, or butterfly, your whole chicken which will remove the backbone and leave the chicken open like a book. You could also use portioned pieces of chicken seasoned and grilled the same way, but you’ll lose the pressurized caramelization you get with the weight of bricks and the moistness of leaving the chicken whole.
Combine the cayenne, chile flakes, pimenton, oregano, vesta, black pepper and salt and mix to combine evenly. Place your chicken in a large bowl and drizzle lightly with olive oil. Dust all over with your spice mixture and using your hands rub the spices into every nook and cranny, even under the skin without ripping it. Allow to rest in the fridge for 15 minutes before placing on the grill.
When ready to add to the grill, turn the heat down to medium and place the chicken skin-side down. Wrap your two bricks in aluminum foil and place on top of your chicken, pressing firmly to keep them from slipping off. Cook for 8-10 minutes, watching carefully for flame ups, spritzing with a water bottle to keep them at bay. Remove the bricks, flip the chicken, add the bricks back and cook an additionally 10 minutes. Flip one more time so the skin side is back down ensuring extra cripsy skin and cook until approximately 165 F internal temperature.
Once the chicken’s fully cooked thru, remove from the grill and allow to rest for 5-10 minutes. Top with a little extra salt and plenty of chopped basil and go to town! Let your gluttonous side run rampant as the sticky, fiery exterior coats your lips. The bricks unrelenting weight creates a crunchy exterior similar to fried chicken with the same extra juicy flesh inside, meat nearly falling of the bones in tasty sacrifice.
Hell, the devil may actually be a dark angel full of hate and oppression, but the guy makes a mean chicken. Maybe he’s just a cranky, misunderstood chef, spewing world domination and grilled chicken on the line of Hells kitchen (with Chef Ramsey obviously by his side). To pull from Mick one last time, “what’s puzzling you, is the nature of my game”…
SPARK NOTES: 1.BUTTERFLY A CHICKEN 2.COAT IN FIERY SPICES 3.GRILL UNDER A BRICK 4.DEVOUR & ENJOY ETERNAL DAMNATION (just kidding)