Recipes // Main Dish Chicken and Turkey // Chicken Under a Brick

Chicken Under a Brick

The Executive Chef of the Ysidro Ranch in Santa Barbara, Jamie West, shares his unique chicken and mac & cheese recipes.
For the Chicken

For the Marinade:

  • 1 tablespoon cumin, ground
  • 1 tablespoon coriander, ground
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup grape seed oil
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 1 whole free-range chicken (3 pounds), split
  1. Combine all of the ingredients for the marinade together in a shallow pan.
  2. Prepare chicken by splitting it down the back and removing the backbone, breast bone and rib cage. Lay the chicken out flat and rub the blended spices all over. Marinate for at least 8 hours or overnight.
  3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  4. Heat a large cast iron skillet (or other heavy oven-proof pan) over medium-high heat. When hot, add some grape seed oil and place the chicken skin side down in the pan.
  5. Immediately place a foil-wrapped brick on top of the chicken(or you can use another heavy pan on top) Reduce the heat to medium and cook for 10 to 12 minutes until chicken is golden brown and has a nice crust
  6. Finish cooking in the oven for a further 10 to 15 minutes. Internal temperature between the leg and thigh should register 165 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer, when cooked through.
  7. Serve with Truffle Mac & Cheese and Green Beans.
For the Truffle Mac & Cheese:
  • 16 oz pasta such as elbow or cavatappi, cooked al dente, drained, chilled
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 6 tablespoons flour
  • 32 oz whole milk
  • 12 oz cheddar cheese, grated
  • 8 oz truffle pecorino cheese, grated
  • 6 oz Parmesan cheese, grated
  • Salt, pepper and a pinch of nutmeg to taste
  • Cheese for top, as needed
  1. Make a roux of the butter and flour. In a 2 qt sauce pan melt the butter and add the flour mix with a wooden spoon and cook over medium heat until fragrant and blond in color, about 2-3 minutes stirring often. Do not brown.
  2. Add the milk and cook over medium heat, boil and mix with a wire whip stirring vigorously to make it creamy smooth and thick.
  3. Add the cheese, stirring until cheese is melted.
  4. Mix desired amount of sauce with macaroni.
  5. Place it in a baking dish sprinkle a little cheese on top and bake it on high heat until brown.

This will make more than 2 servings, so reserve the rest for another use.

Sauteed Green Breans
  • 8 oz fresh green beans, cleaned
  • 2 tbs butter
  • 1 tbs shallots, chopped
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  1. Cook the cleaned green beans in boiling water for 3 minutes or until the turn dark green and are al dente.
  2. Remove from the boiling water and ?shock? or place them in ice water to stop the cooking. Remove from the ice water and drain them.
  3. When ready to serve, heat a 12 inch skillet over medium heat, add the butter and shallots, when the butter is melted, add the green beans and sauté until they are hot. Season with salt and pepper as desired.
Lemon Beurre Fondue
  • 2 oz water
  • 2 oz white wine
  • 4 oz butter, cold cut into cubes
  • 1 each lemons, juiced
  • Salt, pepper and parsley as needed
  1. Heat the water and white wine, when simmering, add the butter and whip in in constantly until it thickens.
  2. Add the lemon juice and salt and pepper. Keep warm until ready to serve.


To Serve:

Place the Mac & Cheese on a plate with the golden brown side up. Place the green beans next to it and the chicken on the other half of the plate. Spoon the desired amount of Beurre fondue over the chicken and sprinkle with chopped parsley.

Yields 2 servings

Recipes courtesy of Executive Chef Jamie West of Ysidro Ranch in Santa Barbara.

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