Fabulous roasted chicken

October 7, 2008 5:47:39 PM PDT
A-16 has an award winning Chef with Nate Appleman and his flair for transporting the cuisine of Campania and the wood fired piaaz of Naples to San Francisco's marina neighborhood. He taught our own Nick Smith how to roast a perfect, tender chicken in minutes.

Roasted Young Chicken with Radishes and Salsa Verde
Serves 6

3 Tablespoons dried oregano
1 teaspooon aniseeds
1 teaspoon dried chile flakes
6 (1 pound) young chickens (or 12 8 oz. quail), patted dry
Kosher salt
1 cup loosely packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
1/2 teaspoon salt-packed capers, soaked
1/2 cup fresh bread crumbs, toasted
1/2 clove garlic, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 bunch red radishes, trimmed.

In a spice grinder or in a mortar with a pestle, grind together the oregano, aniseeds, and 1/2 teaspoon of the chile flakes to a powder. season the chickens' skin and cavities with about 2 tablespoons salt, followed by the spice rub. Cover and refrigerate at least overnight or up to 2 days.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F. Bring the chickens to room temperature.

Meanwhile, make the salsa verde. In a food processor or mortar, combine the parsley, capers, bread crumbs, garlic and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon chile flakes. Pulse a few times, or crush with a pestle, until coarsely blended. With the processor running, or while you continue to crush the mixture with a pestle, drizzle in the olive oil. Stir in the lemon juice and a pinch of salt. Taste for seasoning and add more lemon juice and salt if needed.

Using a mandolin or a sharp knife, carefully slice the radishes into thin slices. Toss the radishes with a pinch of salt and a couple of tablespoons of the salsa verde.

Roast the chickens on 2 rimmed baking sheets, rotating the pans front to back about halfway through cooking, for about 20 minutes, or until the birds are golden brown and the juices run clear when a thigh is pierced with a fork.

Serve the chickens on a warmed platter and spoon the radishes around the sides. Drizzle some of the salsa verde over the top of the birds. Pass the remaining sauce at the table.

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