RECIPE BY SARAH GLOVER • PHOTOGRAPHY BY LUISA BRIMBLE
1 large free-range corn-fed chicken, cut down the back so it is butterflied open
200 g your choice of pesto (I used tarragon, but basil would also be great)
good handful of fresh herbs, such as oregano, basil and thyme
Large cast-iron frying pan
1: Heat your barbecue for about 30 minutes to get it nice and hot. I used a wood-fire barbecue as it gives a great flavour as well as a good high heat, which is important to ensure you seal the meat rather than stewing it, retaining the juices and keeping the chicken meat nice and moist.
Using your fingers, carefully loosen the skin of your butterflied chicken and gently smear the pesto under the skin. Tuck the herbs in as well – don’t worry about cutting them or anything; it's just to give it extra flavour while it cooks.
Place the chook, breast side down, directly on the barbecue plate or in a cast-iron frying pan over the heat. Put a brick on top – this will help keep in the moisture and the pressure will make sure it cooks evenly. Cook for about 30 minutes, then take the brick off and flip the chicken over. Place the brick back on the chicken and cook for another 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to rest for 10 minutes before carving … or pulling apart with your fingers!
2: Drizzle with a little olive oil and sprinkle with salt before serving with string green beans with creamy cauliflower and cheesy capsicum.