Exploring vegan, vegetarian and sustainable cooking

Grilled butterflied chicken with a chile-cinnamon rub

Source: Fine Cooking #47 (also at

I was at the market in the morning, and that’s where this meal came together. I was at the butcher’s counter, and a chicken was calling to me. It was a nice crisp day, and a grilled chicken sounded absolutely delicious.

I’ve butterflied a chicken a few times for cooking on the grill. Today’s recipe was a new one, and it confirmed that grilling a butterflied chicken is possibly the best way to cook chicken.

Butterflying involved cutting out and removing the backbone so that the chicken can lie flat. It cooks very evenly on the grill, and doesn’t require turning.

This spice rub combines chile powder, cinnamon, paprika, coriander and cumin in a way that creates a nice balance of spicy, sweet and smoky. The recipe called for rubbing the mixture both under the skin and on the skin. This helps both flavour the chicken and create a nice crisp skin. (Something that I would recommend doing with any recipe.)

And what better to go with chicken than corn on the cob, also cooked on the grill? Not only did it help create the perfect late summer meal, but it cooked within the time the chicken needed to rest. I simply removed all but the innermost layer of husk. (It’s OK if some corn peaks through.) Cook over a medium-low grill for a total of 10 minutes, rotating a few times. The inner layer of husk will toast up, giving the corn a nice smokey, caramel flavour.

Grilled corn on the cob
Grilled corn on the cob

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