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chicken recipes

Spatchcocked Chicken with Buttermilk Marinade


This chicken is so tender and full of flavour from the smoke of the fire and the spicy buttermilk marinade.

  • Serves: 4 |
    4 servings
  • Rating:

  • Difficulty:

  • Prep Time : 2:0 hours |
  • Cook Time : 60 mins
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1  large free-range chicken, spatchcocked
Sea  salt and freshly milled black pepper
1 tsp (5 ml) garam masala

Buttermilk Marinade

1 C (250 ml) buttermilk or runny yoghurt
4 fat cloves of garlic, finely crushed with coarse salt
Grated rind and juice of 1 lemon
2 tsp (10 ml) ground cumin
2 tsp (10 ml) ground coriander
1 tsp (5 ml) dried chilli flakes
1 tsp (5 ml) turmeric


Spatchcock the chicken by cutting down one side of the spine with a pair of kitchen scissors. Flatten the chicken out by leaning the heel of your hand on the chicken and press down to crack the breastbone.

Season the chicken with the sea salt, freshly milled black pepper and rub in the garam masala.

Buttermilk Marinade

Mix the marinade ingredients in a glass, ceramic or stainless steel bowl.

Add the chicken, turning it over a couple of times to ensure that it is well covered by the marinade. Cover with clingwrap and refrigerate for at least two hours before braaing.

Bring the chicken to room temperature before you start to braai. Place the chicken breast-side up, on the edge of the grill where it is cooler and cook for at least 25 minutes, taking care not to burn it.  Turn the chicken over and cook for a further 15 to 20 minutes.  Baste with the remaining marinade during the cooking process. Place an upturned roasting tin over the chicken to reflect the heat of the fire and to partly roast the chicken.  The smoke from the braai that will fill the roasting tin will add extra flavour.

Pierce the chicken with a skewer to check whether it is cooked ­– the juices should run clear.  Remove from the braai, cover with a sheet of foil and allow to rest for about 10 minutes.