It’s not summer if you haven’t had grilled chicken! Am I right? This recipe takes your traditional chicken with BBQ sauce to the next level with an amazing roasted garlic-herb dressing. I took this from one of my favorite cookbooks ever — Tyler Florence’s “Tyler’s Ultimate.” I have so many favorites from that book it’s insane. This one didn’t disappoint either.
I love this recipe because it’s pretty simple — there aren’t many ingredients, there’s not a ton of prep, and the end result is simple and delicious. The chicken is super moist and topped with the garlicky herb dressing and a squeeze of grilled lemon, it packs a ton of flavor. I’d never thought about grilling radicchio, but it’s the perfect accompaniment to the chicken. If you’ve never had radicchio, it’s a bitter leaf vegetable (technically chicory) that is typically purplely-pink (definitely a real word) and white in color. I love it, and grilled with a little balsamic, olive oil and salt and pepper, it gets a little sweeter and caramelized on the edges. I personally love the bitter flavor as a contrast. Get a little bit of everything in one bite, and it’s a great combination of crunchy, bitter radicchio, moist chicken, acid from the lemon and fresh, herb-forward dressing.
I made this for my girlfriends Kim and Shahnaz for a night of reality TV indulgence, and paired it with a potato salad. It was a hit. I also love the family-style presentation — reminds me of my family’s dinner table growing up in New Hampshire. Enjoy!
- I had a bunch of chicken drumsticks in the freezer, so instead of using a full chicken, I just used the drumsticks instead — it worked great! Same thing if you want to use up some thighs, etc. Personally, I think it’s a pain to cut up a whole chicken and I’ll avoid it by buying it already separated.
- I don’t have a grill (I know, I know, workin’ on that) so I just used my trusty grill pan and another skillet side-by-side on the stovetop. A little bit of a hassle, but worth it.
- I didn’t want to heat up my whole oven to roast the garlic, so instead I used my toaster oven — the perfect solution.
- When you quarter the radicchio, don’t core it — the core will hold the leaves together while you grill it. You can core it once you’re done grilling, and you’ll want to — the core is tough and inedible.
Grilled Chicken and Radicchio With Roasted Garlic-Herb Dressing
- 1-2 heads of garlic, cut in half at the equator
- Kosher salt
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 whole fresh thyme sprigs, plus leaves from 6 sprigs
- 2 lemons, juiced
- 2 lemon halves
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 1 4-4 1/2 pound chicken, cut into 10 similar sized pieces
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 medium head of radicchio, preferably Treviso, cut into quarters
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Cut a piece of aluminium foil about 12 inches long.
Put the garlic on 1/2 of the foil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, drizzle in some olive oil, and add 2 sprigs of thyme. Fold the foil enclosing the garlic, making a pouch, and add a couple teaspoons of water. Fold the foil over the garlic to enclose and fold in the edges 2 or 3 times to seal. Put the package in the oven and roast for 30 minutes, or longer, until the garlic is soft. Open the package and let the garlic cool a bit, then squeeze out the cloves into a food processor or blender. Add 1/2 cup olive oil, the lemon juice, parsley, and thyme leaves and puree to make a thick vinaigrette.
Preheat an outdoor gas or charcoal grill to medium heat.
Rinse the chicken and pat dry with paper towels. Put the pieces in a bowl, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and drizzle with olive oil; toss to coat with the seasonings and then refrigerate while you get everything else together.
Put the radicchio in another bowl, drizzle with olive oil, balsamic vinegar. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss; set aside.
When you’re ready to cook, take a few paper towels and fold them several times to make a thick square. Blot a small amount of oil on the paper towel and carefully and quickly wipe the hot grates of the grill to make a nonstick surface.
Season with salt and pepper and place the radicchio quarters on the preheated grill. Cook the radicchio for about 2 minutes per side until it has a nice char; pull it off the grill, place into a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and set aside to steam and finish cooking.
Then put the chicken on the grill, skin side down, and grill. Grill the chicken for about 20 minutes, turning once, then baste with about half of the vinaigrette and keep cooking until an instant-read thermometer stuck into the thickest part of the thigh reads 160 degrees F and the chicken is nice and caramelised all over, 15 to 20 more minutes. During the last few minutes, throw the lemon halves on the grill, cut sides down, and cook until just marked and smoky.
To serve, separate the radicchio into individual leaves in a big bowl. Add the chicken and the rest of the dressing and toss well. Serve with grilled lemon halves, squeeze the lemon over the chicken, and top with reserved dressing.