1. Remove the chicken from its packaging and place on a large cutting board. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels, and place breast-side down on the board with the neck facing towards you.
2. Using good-quality kitchen shears or poultry shears and holding the neck in one hand, cut along one side of the chicken spine, separating it from the ribs. Cut closely to the spine so that you do not remove any excess meat. Continue to cut about 3/4 along the spine on one side, repeat on the other side of the spine. Hold the spine for leverage and continue cutting on both sides to remove it completely. If you are having difficulty, rotate the bird so that the tail faces you and cut from the opposite side.
3. Reserve the spine for homemade chicken stock or a quick pan jus. Flip the chicken so that the breasts face upward and the chicken legs face outward on both sides. Using the palm of your hand, press along the breast bone with some force to flatten the chicken completely. The legs and breasts should be lay completely flat.
4. Allow the chicken to rest at room temperature for at least 30 minutes (this will help crisp up the skin faster and provide more even browning.
5. Rub the chicken on all sides with extra virgin olive oil, Season the chicken simply and liberally on both sides with salt and pepper – or rub with your favorite spice rub. (one option included)
6. Place the chicken, breast side up, on a rack the center of a roasting pan (or a large sheet pan) and roast at 425° (center-rack) until the thickest part of the breast registers 160 °degrees Fahrenheit on a good-quality instant thermometer. The skin should be golden and crispy. The temperature of the chicken will increase as it rests as much as 10 degrees F, so you do not want to remove the chicken any later, or the chicken breast will begin to dry out.
7. Allow to rest for 15 minutes before slicing and carving – slice away the legs. Then remove the breasts from the breast bone. Slice against the grain and serve immediately.