Peri Peri Backyard Chicken
Ask your butcher to tunnel bone a few chicken for you or if you're confident, give it a go yourself....
1.5kg chicken thighs and legs, skin-on, bone-in, trimmed of excess fat
2 Tbs lemon zest
1/3 cup lemon juice
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 Tbs fresh chopped thyme
2 tsp fresh chopped rosemary
1 tsp Kosher salt
1 tsp black pepper
2-3 Tbs melted butter
Lemon slices, for garnish
Place lemon juice, lemon peel, garlic, thyme, rosemary, salt, and pepper in a small bowl, whisk to combine. With the tip of a sharp knife, cut into each chicken piece one or two times by about 2cm. (This will help the marinade penetrate.)
Place the chicken pieces and the marinade in a large freezer bag. Rotate the bag so that all chicken pieces are coated with the marinade. Seal the bag and place in a bowl in the refrigerator (in case of leakage). Let marinate for 2 hours.
Preheat oven to 220 C. Remove chicken from marinade and place in a single layer in a large baking dish, skin side up. Reserve the marinade. Use a pastry brush to brush a little melted butter on to each piece of chicken.
Bake for a total of 50 to 55 minutes, until the skins are crispy brown, and the chicken is cooked through, juices running clear (breasts have an internal temperature of 75 C and thighs 80 C). Half-way through the baking, at about the 25 minute mark, baste the chicken pieces generously with reserved marinade.
Depending on the size of the breasts, they may be ready before the thighs, so if you are cooking a mix of chicken parts, keep that in mind, you may have to take them out of the oven before the thighs.
Let rest, covered in foil, for 10 minutes before serving.
Pour the juices from the pan into a serving bowl. Use a tablespoon to skim the fat off the top. Serve alone or with steamed rice.