Grilled Chicken with Sweet and Spicy Barbecue Sauce

  • To make “grilled” chicken in a broiler, preheat the broiler and cover a broiler pan with aluminum foil, spraying it lightly with nonstick spray to prevent sticking. Place the chicken pieces skin side down on the foil and broil 4 to 6 inches from the heat source for 10 minutes (without mopping with the sauce). Turn and continue broiling for 5 more minutes. Turn again and mop generously with the Sweet-and-Spicy Barbecue Sauce. 
  • Continue broiling, mopping often and turning, until the chicken reaches the desired internal temperature, 3 to 5 more minutes. Again, the breast, wings, and back will be done first.
  1. Canola oil for greasing the grill grate
  2. One 4- to 5-pound chicken, giblets and neck removed, cut into 9 pieces
  3. Sweet-and-Spicy Barbecue Sauce
  • Set up a grill for direct cooking over medium heat that is, heat a gas grill to medium heat or build a medium-hot, well-ashed coal bed in a charcoal grill.
  • Lightly oil the grill grate. Place the chicken, skin side down, 4 to 6 inches directly over the heat source or coals. Mop with the Sweet-and-Spicy Barbecue Sauce. Cover the grill and cook, turning occasionally and mopping generously with the sauce, until the sauce has caramelized and the juices from the meat run clear, and until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast without touching bone registers 160°F or 170°F, 16 to 18 minutes.
  • Since the breasts, wings, and back will be done first, move them to a cooler part of the grate, cover the grill, and continue to cook the thighs and legs for about 5 more minutes, until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh without touching the bone registers 165°F or 180°F. Mop generously with any remaining sauce, transfer to a carving board, and let stand for 5 minutes.
  • Sweet-and-Spicy Barbecue Sauce
  1. Consider making a double batch of this sauce, freezing half, and saving it for your next backyard barbecue. Makes about 21⁄4 cups
  2. 2⁄3 cup tomato paste
  3. 2⁄3 cup water
  4. 1⁄2 cup packed dark brown sugar
  5. 1⁄4 cup unsulfured molasses
  6. 1⁄4 cup cider vinegar
  7. 2 tablespoons chili powder
  8. 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  9. 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  10. 1 teaspoon onion powder
  11. 1 teaspoon salt
  12. 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  13. 1⁄2 teaspoon garlic powder
  14. 1⁄2 teaspoon cayenne, or less to taste
  • Whisk the tomato paste, water, brown sugar, molasses, vinegar, chili powder, corn syrup, Worcestershire sauce, onion powder, salt, ground pepper, garlic powder, and cayenne in a medium saucepan set over medium heat until the sugar dissolves.
  • Bring the mixture to a simmer; then reduce the heat to low and simmer, uncovered, until slightly thickened, whisking fairly often to make sure it’s not sticking, about 10 minutes.
  • Add any of the following to the sauce: 1 tablespoon smoked paprika, 2 teaspoons dried oregano, 1 teaspoon ground cumin, 1 teaspoon celery seed, and/or 1⁄4 teaspoon ground cloves.
  • For a more savory sauce, reduce the brown sugar to 1⁄4 cup; or omit the brown sugar altogether and add 1⁄4 cup maple syrup.

Chicken Halves Roasted over Squash

  • Substitute 2 medium leeks, halved lengthwise, cleaned, and thinly sliced, for the onion.
  • Add one 10-ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry, with the squash.
  • Substitute any hard winter squash such as blue hubbard, butternut, or kabocha for the acorn squash.
  1. 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  2. 1 medium onion, chopped
  3. 1 red bell pepper, cored, seeded, and chopped
  4. 1 large acorn squash (about 2 pounds), peeled, seeded, and cut into very small 
  5. 1⁄2-inch cubes
  6. 1 tablespoon stemmed thyme or 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  7. 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
  8. 1⁄2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  9. One 4- to 5-pound chicken, giblets and neck removed, then split in half from tip to tail
  10. 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  11. 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • Position the rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F.
  • Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet set over medium heat. Add the onion and bell pepper; cook, stirring frequently, until soft and aromatic, about 3 minutes.
  • Add the remaining tablespoon of butter, stir in the squash, and cook, stirring once in a while, until slightly oftened at the edges, about 4 minutes.
  • Stir in the thyme, salt, and pepper; cook until aromatic, about 15 seconds. Mound the mixture in the center of a 13 × 9-inch baking pan.
  • Use the two halves of the chicken to form a teepee skin side up over the vegetables. Make sure no vegetable is uncovered.
  • Whisk the mustard and maple syrup in a small bowl. Brush over the skin.
  • Bake until golden until a meat thermometer 
  • inserted in the thigh registers 165°F or 180°F, between 1 hour and 1 hour 20 minutes. Transfer the chicken halves to a cutting board; let stand at room temperature for 10 minutes before carving and serving with the vegetables.

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