Lay the chicken on a rimmed cookie sheet, skin facing up, and sprinkle it generously with salt, pepper, and thyme. Notice how I didn't give exact measurements? It's because I just sprinkle until it's covered. You know how much seasoning your family likes. We like heavily seasoned food, so I'm pretty generous.
Heat a large cast iron skillet on medium-high heat and add the lard.
When the skillet is screamin' hot, use tongs to place the seasoned skin side of the chicken down into the hot oil.
You'll probably only be able to fit half of the chicken into the skillet. That's ok. Do two batches; don't try to cram it all in there.
Then sprinkle the bone side (side facing up) with more salt, pepper, and thyme.
If you're cooking half the chicken in this first batch, add half the garlic -- 20 cloves. Wherever there are spaces between the chicken, nestle a clove or 5 of garlic in there.
Place a lid on the skillet and allow the chicken and garlic to cook for 10 to15 minutes.
Uncover, turn the chicken over, and continue cooking until the chicken is done -- about 10 more minutes.
Cook the rest of the chicken and garlic in this same way, until you've cooked it all.