I created this dish using Bendele Farm spatchcock, tomatoes and zucchinis from Farmer and Sun and olives from Fat Hen Farm. Three great products from the Gympie Region. A “spatchcock” or poussin is a young chicken weighing between 400 and 600 grams. A whole small bird would make a good size main course, or half a large one would be a substantial entree. If you can’t get hold of spatchcocks you could make the same dish quite successfully with a skin on chicken breast. I made the ricotta for the stuffing using unhomoginised milk from Cooloola Milk in Dagun.
4 spatchcocks, deboned
200gm ricotta cheese
30gm Parmesan, grated
½ cup fresh breadcrumbs
2 tbs mixed fresh herbs, finely chopped
500gm small zucchinis, shaved into strips
½ cup black Manzanillo olives, pitted
1 clove garlic, finely sliced
2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
500gm ripe tomatoes, roughly diced
2 cloves garlic, peeled
handful of sweet basil leaves
salt and pepper
Mix together the ricotta, Parmesan, breadcrumbs and herbs and season with salt and pepper. Stuff a heaped tablespoon of mixture between the skin and flesh of the breast and leg of each spatchcock. Cover and refrigerate until needed.
To make the tomato sugo, sauté the garlic cloves in a little olive oil, add the tomatoes and basil and simmer gently until the tomatoes have cooked down to a pulp.
Season and pass through a fine strainer.
Lightly oil each spatchcock, season and grill until well coloured on both sides.
Transfer to a tray and roast at 200 degrees C for 10 minutes.
While the spatchcocks are cooking, sauté the garlic slices and zucchini in olive oil until lightly coloured. Add the olives and heat through. Season, transfer to a colander to drain for a couple of minutes.
Serve the spatchcock in bowls on top of the tomato sugo and zucchini and olive mixture.