Persian Spatchcock Chicken

Persian Spatchcook Chicken
  • 4 servings
  • 65 Minutes to prepare
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  • 1 x 2kg Chicken
  • 2 Lemons
  • 2 Garlic Cloves, finely grated
  • 1 Pomegranite or pack of pomegranite pearls
  • 2 tbsp Sumac
  • 2 tsp Ground Coriander
  • 35g Flaked Almonds
  • 20g Fresh Mint, chopped
  • 300g Quinoa
  • 1 Vegetable Stock Cube
  • 100g Dried Apricots, chopped
  • 1.5 tsp Salt


1 Pre heat the oven to 200°C (fan)/425°F/ gas mark 7. Cut the spatchcock chicken (see below) in half and place skin side up in an oven proof dish.

2 Score the chicken skin at intervals approx 1 cm deep. Zest 1 lemon into a bowl, add the ground coriander, 1½ tsp salt, 2 tbsp. sumac and garlic in a bowl and mix well. Spoon over the chicken and rub into the score marks ensuring the mix coats both sides of the chicken. Slice the zested lemon and place the slices under the chicken. Roast for 40 mins or until cooked through.

3 Whilst the chicken is roasting, rinse the quinoa under cold water. Place in a saucepan and add 600ml of water and the stock cube. Bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer for 15 minutes and remove from the heat. Add the chopped apricots to the quinoa, cover and set to one side.

4 Toast the flaked almonds in a dry pan until light brown. Add 1 tbsp. sumac and toast for 1 minute.

5 Remove the seeds from the pomegranate and add to the toasted almonds with the chopped mint, second lemon’s juice and zest to the quinoa mix and season to taste. Cover and set to one side.

6 Once the chicken is cooked, allow to rest for 10 minutes. Spoon the quinoa onto a serving platter, top with the rested chicken and spoon over the cooking juices.

7 Season and garnish with extra mint leaves.

How to Spatchcock a Chicken

A spatchcocked chicken has been flatted and the backbone removed. It gives a quicker cook time and is perfect for shortening the cook time or cooking on the BBQ.

  1. Place the chicken onto a large chopping board used for raw meat preparation. Turn the chicken upside down breast side onto the board with the neck of the bird closest to you.
  2. Locate the backbone. Using kitchen scissors or poultry shears cut all the way along one side of the backbone. Keep close to the backbone, the scissors with cut through quite easily. Repeat along the other side of the backbone to remove completely. Discard the backbone.
  3. Still with the chicken breast side down and the neck of the bird closest to you, look along the bird for the piece of connecting cartilage where the breast bone starts. This is currently preventing the bird from lying completely flat. Using a knife make a small incision approximately 1 cm deep. Use your fingers either side of the incision to bend the bird backwards to pop the sternum. This will ensure your chicken lies flat.
  4. Turn the bird over and tuck the wing tips in and under to help the bird lie flat.
  5. If using a rub or marinade you can slash the chicken skin to help the flavours penetrate the meat.