Cheese Plus is an anchor of San Francisco's Russian Hill neighborhood for the best coffee, made-to-order sandwiches and gourmet groceries.
Store buyer Alex Raines shared his recipe for Piri Piri chicken, a traditional Portuguese dish. "Most Peri Peri recipes call for a whole lemon diced and then crushed in mortar and pestle. If & When is perfect here as a replacement. I've been using the Moroccan blend on Piri Piri chicken, it's incredible and I can't stop."
1 whole chicken
3 TBSP butter
1 TBSP brandy
2 bay leaves
A large handful of parsley leaves, finely chopped
Sea salt and cracked white and/or black pepper
(Enough pepper to give it that look and texture. You could mix white and black or use all white pepper)
Piri Piri paste
5-6 garlic cloves crushed
1 long red chili
6 TBS olive oil
1 1/2 - 2 TBSP Moroccan Preserved Meyer Lemon Paste
Remove the chicken's backbone with strong kitchen scissors to spatchcock or ask the butcher to do so when buying your bird. Make a few diagonal slashes across the chicken breast.
Season generously with sea salt and pepper.
Chill for at least 2 hours or up to overnight. This draws out moisture and helps make the skin crispier when cooking.
Piri Piri paste
Pound garlic, chili and black pepper with olive oil in mortar and pestle. Mix the garlic/chile/pepper paste with If & When and add a pinch more sea salt if desired.
Rub mixture on chicken (under and over skin) and let sit chilled for another 2-4 hours.
Preheat oven to 420-430 F.
Place bay leaves on baking sheet. Place chicken on top with the breast facing up. Roast for 45 minutes to 1 hour basting regularly.
Transfer to a warm plate to rest for about 15 minutes. Pour all the juices from cooking into a pan. Warm the juices adding the butter and brandy. Simmer gently for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the parsley. Pour over chicken and serve immediately.
The dish is typically served with homemade potato chips.
Recipe from Alex Raines, buyer at Cheese Plus, San Francisco