Peri-Peri Grilled Baby Chicken
D'Artagnan | Yield: Serves 2
Juicy, mild poussin is the perfect vehicle for spicy peri-peri marinade in this easy recipe. Garlic, lemon, oregano, and fresh chilis come together for big flavor pay-off. The marinade is equally delicious on our air-chilled organic chicken or even rabbit, just scale up as needed.
- 2 Whole Free-Range Poussin
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 6 fresh bird's eye chilis, plus or minus to taste, stemmed
- 5 cloves garlic
- Zest of 1 large lemon (after zesting, slice for serving)
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 1½ tablespoons paprika
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Butterfly the poussins: Using poultry shears cut out the backbone of each poussin. Open the birds up and trim away rib bones. Turn the birds skin side up and press your palm against the breast bone to flatten. Pat birds dry; place them in a shallow non-reactive dish.
- Make the marinade: To a blender add olive oil, chilis, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, vinegar, paprika, oregano, bay leaf, 1 teaspoon of salt, and pepper; purée until smooth. Reserve about 3 tablespoons of the marinade in a small bowl; refrigerate.
- Pour remaining marinade over the birds and toss to coat evenly. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
- Heat a grill to high. Remove the poussins from the marinade, season lightly with salt. Grill, turning and basting often with the reserved marinade, until skin is nicely crisped and poussins are cooked through, about 15 minutes. If skin starts to burn too quickly, place over indirect heat. Finished temperature should read 165 degrees F, at the thickest part of the bird.
- Allow to rest for 5 minutes before cutting into quarters and serving with lemon slices.