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Pollo alla Diavola - Tuscan Style

Ok - thanks for the comments on my last blog comparing our food in the US to the food in Italy, both in growing and preparing.  More thoughts to come on that in the days and weeks ahead.

So I had a few requests for a simple recipe learned in Italy. This is an easy one and one I enjoy.

One of the most wonderful things about most Italian cuisine is its simplicity in ingredients and preparation. Here is a simple recipe that is always good and perfectly adapted to Arizona - Pollo alla Diavola - Grilled Chicken, Devil's Style. Many Italian cookbooks will have a version of this recipe, but here is an easy version that I feel truly responds to my passion for the simplicity of Italian and especially Tuscan/Umbrian cuisine.

Ok this is best over a grill with wood coals and an old brick or two placed over the bird. Or if you have a pizza oven, laid flat with the bricks over the top. To start, split a 2 pound chicken open along the backbone, folding it open just like a book. Use your hands to flatten the bird as much as possible.

Then, in a bowl, mix together the following ingredients:

4 cloves of garlic chopped finely
4 tablespoons of fresh chopped sage
4 tablespoons of fresh chopped rosemary
The grated zest and juice of 4 lemons from your lemon tree
2/3 cup of extra virgin olive oil
Sea Salt and ground pepper to taste
....and if you want to kick it up a notch, sprinkle with crushed pepper flakes as you prefer.

Coat your chicken with the above mixture and if you can let it marinate in the refrigerator for two hours or more and overnight if possible turning it often to really get the ingredients incorporated into the chicken.

Remove the chicken from the marinade and place it on the hot grill, skin side down, and weigh it down with the old bricks. Grill for 15-20 minutes managing your coals and heat, turn the chicken skin side up, and grill for another 10 minutes or so depending on your heat. The chicken is done when the skin is dark and crispy. Serve right off the grill splitting the pieces with a meat cleaver as desired.