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A way to get a deliciously crisp skin and moist flesh from a cheap piece of chicken.

  1. Wash and dry chicken pieces. Roughly chop peeled garlic cloves. Pour 1/3 cup olive oil into one gallon plastic ziploc bag or a container large enough to hold the chicken, mix in this container; the garlic, rosemary, sherry then salt and pepper to taste. Place chicken quarters in container and refrigerate for 24 hours.
  2. 3 hours or so before you wish to cook the chicken, remove it from the fridge and allow it to reach room temperature.
  3. Get yourself two bricks or pieces of brick large enough to almost cover the two pieces of chicken. Wash and dry the bricks, wrap them several times in aluminum foil.
  4. Do not use a non-stick pan, this defeats the purpose.
  5. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.
  6. Heat up your pan (cast iron is ideal) over medium flame, pour in just a touch of oil, continue to heat until oil shimmers.
  7. Discard the marinade and place the chicken in the pan, skin side down. Immediately place the bricks on top of the chicken. At this point I place a splatter screen over the pan, do this if you have one. A lid that is not tight is also good, be sure that it allows the majority of the steam to escape. You want to avoid condensation on the lid that drips back down to the chicken.
  8. Cook the chicken under the bricks for 20 minutes. Don't peek, you'll ruin it. Well, I peek at 15 minutes, but any earlier will destroy your skin.
  9. After 20 minutes, turn the chicken over, you should have a very good looking skin on your chicken, the goal is to get it dark golden brown.
  10. Place the pan in the preheated oven, cook for 20 more minutes. Don't worry about overcooking, meat with bones in it cooks slowly.
  11. Remove the chicken and let it rest 5 minutes to finish cooking and redistribute the juices.
  12. To make a quick pan sauce: heat the pan over a high flame after the chicken has been removed, deglaze with stock and white wine. I use about 1/4 cup of each and let it reduce a bit, scraping up the fond. Then right before I put the sauce on the chicken I add a tablespoon of butter to finish the sauce.

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