2 chickens (about 3 1/2 lb each), backbones cut out and each chicken cut into 12 pieces
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoons chopped thyme
1 tablespoon chopped rosemary
1 tablespoon fine sea salt
1/2 to 1 teaspoon hot red-pepper flakes
10 garlic cloves, peeled
2 slices pancetta, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 cup dry white wine
24 oil-cured black olives
Preheat oven to 450°F with rack in middle. Toss chicken with oil, thyme, rosemary, sea salt, red-pepper flakes, and 1 tsp pepper, rubbing mixture into chicken.
Arrange chicken, skin side up, in 1 layer in a large sheet pan. Scatter garlic and pancetta on top and roast until chicken begins to brown, about 20 minutes. Drizzle wine over chicken and roast 8 minutes more. Scatter olives over chicken and roast until skin is golden brown and chicken is cooked through, 15 to 20 minutes more. Let stand 10 minutes.
Cooks’ note: To cut a chicken into 12 pieces, remove wings and cut each breast half into 3 pieces, then separate drumsticks and thighs. Backbones can be used to make chicken stock.