Apr 01, 2020Chris LaBranche

Serves 4


  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon Aleppo pepper (you can substitute cayenne)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • Grated zest and juice of 1 orange
  • 1 whole chicken (about 4-5 lbs), butterflied, see below
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


  • To butterfly the chicken: Put the chicken on a cutting board breast side down. Use poultry shears to cut along both sides of the backbone; remove and discard the backbone. Flip the chicken over and press down gently to break the breastbone and flatten the breast slightly.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the yogurt, 2 tablespoons olive oil, the garlic, ginger, cinnamon, coriander, aleppo pepper, cilantro, orange zest and juice. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels and add to the bowl with the marinade. Liberally coat the chicken all over with the marinade. Refrigerate in the bowl, uncovered, for at least 2 hours, but preferably overnight.
  • Remove the chicken from the fridge and allow it to come up to room temperature, about 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Remove the chicken from the marinade, wiping off most, but not all of the yogurt and put it skin side up in a large cast iron skillet, (or you can use a broiler pan or on a rack set inside a rimmed baking sheet). Drizzle the chicken with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil and season both sides well with salt and pepper.
  • Roast the chicken, uncovered, until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thigh reads 160°F, 45 to 50 minutes.
  • Transfer the chicken to a carving board and let rest for 15 minutes before carving and serving.

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