Devilish Crunchy Chicken
|Fryer chicken||3 Pound, split in half (1 Bird)|
|Fruity olive oil||1⁄2 Cup (8 tbs)|
|Fresh lemon juice||1⁄4 Cup (4 tbs)|
|Tabasco sauce||1⁄2 Teaspoon|
|Freshly ground black pepper||To Taste|
|Lemons||2 Large, cut into wedges|
Wash the chicken under cold water and pat dry.
Remove the wing tips and discard them or save them for stock.
Trim off excess skin and fat.
With a sharp knife, make an incision between the leg and thigh, partially separating the two sections.
Repeat with the breast and wing sections .
With the skin side up, flatten the chicken with a meat pounder, cracking the bones in several places.
Remove broken pieces of bones.
In a large bowl, combine the olive oil, lemon juice, and tabasco sauce and stir to blend.
Add the chicken, turning to cover with the liquid, cover the bowl, and let it marinate for about 2 to 3 hours in the refrigerator.
Heat a very large, cast-iron skillet over high heat until hot, about 3 minutes.
Lift the chicken from the marinade and place it, skin side down, in the pan.
Reserve the marinade.
Place a flat oven-safe plate or large cake pan over the chicken.
It should not be a tight-fitting lid that causes the chicken to steam.
Weight it down heavily.
I use a large saucepan or tea kettle filled with water.
After about 2 minutes, remove the weight, gently loosen the chicken with a spatula if it is sticking to the pan, and baste with some of the reserved marinade.
Return the plate and weight and cook for 3 to 5 minutes longer, or until the skin is quite crisp and dark colored.
Season the top side with salt and pepper.
Turn the chicken, baste with more of the marinade, season with salt and pepper, and continue cooking the second side for 5 to 7 minutes, uncovered.
Transfer the chicken to a platter or individual plates, squeeze the juice of 1 lemon over it.