Dante’s Chicken (Pollo alla diavola)

Dante's Chicken

  • 3  1 1/4 to 1 1/12 pound Cornish game hens, halved, gibblets and backbones removed
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp dried crushed red pepper
  • 1 Tbsp chopped fresh rosemary

Pat hens dry with paper towels. Place on baking sheet. Mix oil, red pepper and rosemary in bowl. Rub all over hens. Let stand 1 hour at room temperature.

Dante's Chicken, SkilletsHeat two heavy large skillets over medium-high heat. Sprinkle hens with salt. Add 3 hen halves, skin side down to each skillet. Place 1 heavy large pot atop hens in each skillet. Place weights (such as several bricks or rocks) in each pot. Cook until juices run clear when thickest part of thigh is pierced, about 18 minutes per side.

Yield: 6 servings

From: Bon Appetit, May 2000

Gray: DON’T FORGET THE SALT!!!! (I forgot the salt – It isn’t in the ingredient list, so I missed it…)  That goes back to rule #1 Read your recipe first….  I did that, still missed it…  Oh well, I also didn’t chop the rosemary – or let it rest long enough.  All that being said, this dish was underwhelming.  Probably because I screwed it up so bad. This isn’t worst thing I’ve ever made, but considering the extra work to flatten the birds, I think I get better results from other techniques.  Another thing, was that the smoke from the rosemary and peppers was very potent and burned our eyes.  If you have a way to cook this outdoors, then I suggest you do so.

Katie: This was just okay. I was not impressed especially due to the amount of work that Gray put into it. It wasn’t bad though, and it would definitely do better with salt. If making again, I’d also go easier on the rosemary because that flavor was pronounced. We made two Cornish game hens, and they fit into our biggest skillet. We used a second skillet as our weight to put on top, and the aluminum foil is so that the bottom of the skillet didn’t transfer anything to the hens. Overall, I think there are many other recipes for roasted chicken that are tastier and take less time!

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