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tuscan lemon chicken

September 17, 2009


Ina Garten, aka the Barefoot Contessa, has really nearly-fool-proof  recipes.  They are fancy, but easy to cook everyday.   I know some people complain that her recipes are high fat, but I don’t care.  High fat is good!  Cut back on the butter and oil as you see fit or moderate your portions.   Ina doesn’t make any bones about a little bit of fat.  Her recipes are very French that way.

Well, this recipe isn’t French, it is Italian.  I bought some free range chicken legs from the fairly-new careit Urban Deli in Crestwood.   For some reason, these chicken legs were CHEAP – only $11.21 for four big thighs and drumsticks.  I hope that careit is sustainable and flourishes there.  They stock Greens Eggs and Ham products, and have a decent selection of free range and organic meats.

OK, so the recipe.  Here’s what the chicken looks like on the barbecue.  Lovely, huh?  (Well, for those of us who are carnivores.  For everybody else, my apologies).  The chicken was dense and moist and tarty lemony.  Just like I like my chickens.


Tuscan Lemon Chicken
-adapted from the Barefoot Contessa

4 chicken legs (preferably free range)
1/2 cup olive oil
zest and juice of two lemons
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 stem rosemary leaves, chopped
1 whole lemon, halved

Combine the olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, rosemary, and 1 teaspoon pepper in a shallow casserole dish. Add the chicken, turning it in the dish. Cover the dish with the lid and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight, turning once or twice.

When ready to grill, turn a gas grill on medium heat.  Place the chicken on the  grill skin side up, and weight it down with the casserole dish you used for marinating. Cook for 20 minutes, until the underside is golden brown. Turn the chicken skin side down, weight again with the dish and cook for another 20 minutes, until the skin is golden brown and the chicken is cooked through. Place the lemon halves on the cool side of the grill, cut side down, for the last 10 minutes of cooking. Remove the chicken to a plate cover with tin foil, and allow to rest for 5 minutes.


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