Grilled chicken has rarely tasted better than it does in this recipe for whole chili-lime rubbed butterflied (spatchcock) chicken, fired up on my Grill Dome ceramic cooker. By removing the backbone from the chicken and grilling it bone-side down, you are not only allowing the chicken to slow roast without drying out or burning from direct flame but also making sure the dark and white meat cook evenly.
GRILLED CHILI-LIME BUTTERFLIED CHICKEN
8 cups water
¼ cup Kosher salt
¼ cup brown sugar
2 (3lb.) chickens
¼ cup olive oil
Chili-lime salt (recipe follows)
Combine water, salt, and brown sugar in a container large enough to hold the two chickens and stir until the salt has completely dissolved.
Place chickens on a large cutting board breast side down and remove the backbone from each chicken using kitchen shears or poultry shears. Turn the chickens over and open up like a book, pressing down until the breastbone cracks and the chickens lay flat.
Place chickens in the brine mixture and refrigerate for 4-6 hours.
Prepare Grill Dome for medium heat cooking, approximately 325 degrees. Add 2-3 chunks of your favorite smoking wood to ashed over charcoal for maximum smoke flavor. Place a water filled aluminum half pan on the indirect cooking rack and put the main cooking grate in place.
Remove the chickens from the brine, rinse, and pat dry. Coat both sides of the chickens with olive oil then season liberally with chili-lime salt.
Place one butterflied chicken bone side down on the main cooking grate. Add the grill extender rack and set the second chicken bone side down on the rack.
Close the Grill Dome lid and allow the chickens to grill for approximately 1.5 hours until they reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees in the thickest part of the breast meat. Remove chickens from the grill and allow them to rest for 5 minutes before slicing and serving.
2 tbsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. lime zest
1 tsp. chili powder
½ tbsp. brown sugar
Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and blend well. Store in an airtight container until ready to use.
Disclosure: My Grill Dome cooker was provided for free by the company for recipe testing purposes.