Pressed Spiced Chicken With Hot Honey Glaze

Serves 6.

Note: If you’re looking for a crisp-skinned chicken with loads of flavor, this technique is for you. It starts on the stove, weighs down the meat for maximum skin contact, and finishes in a hot oven. Paprika, cumin, coriander and cinnamon give the chicken an intoxicating aroma and a dark, lacquered brown appearance. Honey, infused with the heat of a red chile, is brushed on at toward the end of roasting to give it another flavor boost and a touch of sweetness. From Meredith Deeds.

• 3 to 4 lb. whole chicken (fryer)

• 2 tsp. paprika

• 1 1/2 tsp. ground cumin

• 1 1/2 tsp. ground coriander

• 1 1/2 tsp. salt

• 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

• 1/2 tsp. cinnamon

• 2 tbsp. olive oil

• 3 tbsp. honey

• 1 tbsp. lemon juice

• 1 hot red chile, thinly sliced

• Lemon wedges


Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Rinse the chicken in cold water and pat dry with paper towels. Place breast-side-down on a large cutting board. Using sharp kitchen shears, remove the backbone by cutting along either side of it. Turn chicken over and lay out flat. Press firmly on breast to flatten the chicken. Tuck wing tips behind back.

In a small bowl, combine paprika, cumin, coriander, salt, pepper, cinnamon and olive oil. Stir together to form a paste. Rub the paste over the both sides of the chicken.

In a small, microwaveable bowl, combine the honey, lemon juice and chile. Heat in the microwave on high for 30 seconds. Let stand while the chicken begins cooking.

Wrap 2 bricks in a couple of layers of foil. (If you don’t have bricks, use another heavy pan weighed down.) Set a large cast-iron or other heavy ovenproof pan over medium-high heat. When hot, put the chicken, breast side down, in the pan and immediately put the bricks or heavy pan on top of the chicken. Turn the heat to medium and cook (without moving the chicken) until the skin is browned (be careful not to burn the spices), about 8 to 12 minutes. Remove the bricks (or heavy pan), turn the chicken over, and put the pan in the hot oven. Roast the chicken for 15 minutes.

Brush the chicken with the honey mixture and continue to roast for another 5 minutes. Brush the chicken with more honey mixture, making sure to spoon some of the chile slices on top of the chicken, and roast for another 5 to 10 minutes or until a thermometer registers at least 165 degrees. Let stand 10 minutes before carving. Serve with lemon wedges on the side.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 320 Fat 18 g Sodium 675 mg

Carbohydrates 11 g Saturated fat 4 g Total sugars 9 g

Protein 27 g Cholesterol 85 mg Dietary fiber 1 g

Exchanges per serving: 1 carb, 4 medium-fat protein.