Stretching the BBQ Season
Last week I partook in one of my personal favorite rituals: picking one of the first cartons of eggnog from the grocery store shelf. This event signifies many changes in my lifestyle as fall and winter inevitably approach. While I will no longer be spending evenings imbibing in the pleasures of summer, there are two patio activities I will bend over backwards to extend. The first, cigars, requires a nice heavy jacket, and one that I don’t mind picking up a light aroma of cigar smoke. The second, BBQ, leads me to push my grill as close to the door as I can to make the quick dashes from inside. Here are a few ideas to minimize the number of times you’ll be coming in and out.
Beer Butt BBQ Chicken
If I had to choose a favorite food or even a favorite smell, roasted chicken would be right up there. Doing your roasting on the barbecue with a little help from some good beer is always a good idea. As you can see with the picture above, putting a beer can right into the bottom of your whole chicken will allow you to stand it up and leave it alone to roast(a metal rack can make it even more stable). Coat the inside and outside of the bird with salt and spices, and drink half of the beer first. I put my grill on medium and cook it until the white meat reads 70 Celsius. I’m still experimenting with different types of beer and am not convinced that hoppy or malty flavors translate into the final product.
Wood Chip Smoker Box
The only smell that might beat out roast chicken is the smell of smoked roast chicken. A stainless steel box can be filled with a variety of wood chips, depending on the smell you like and placed on the grill beside whatever meat you are grilling. I like to use wet applewood and cedar chips, let them get nice and hot first, then turn the grill down to low and slow cook chicken, ribs, or even bacon while the smoke fills your barbeque.
A surprisingly affordable addition to your existing grill, a rotisserie can make slow-roasting meat very easy and is one of my favorite excuses to pull out the grill in the winter. Part toy/part tool/part meat cooker, this is something every cook needs to have. The slow turning creates great roasts that seem to hold moisture better than those done in the oven. Not to mention they taste better. I usually sear beef or game roasts on the grill on high first, then put it into the rotisserie brackets and let it begin its slow journey around and around.
Bourbon and BBQ
Bourbon and BBQ go together like peanut butter and jelly—no better place to enjoy adult luxury than Nashville, TN. Carey and Delaniah Bringle, Peg Leg Poker owners, had a great idea and started their own bourbon brand. Be the first to introduce this to your friends. It may not be well known as your other bourbons, but this is one that everyone should try.
Peg Leg Porker’s entry-level bottling carries a no age statement. Don’t let the no age scare you. With notes of bacon fat and earthly goodness, it will make your mouth want more. This is a young, underrated bourbon.
In the 8year bourbon, a little more mature caramel and vanilla notes come out. With a sweet buttery note, making it a smooth bourbon.
The 12 year bourbon-moving up the ladder on flavor complexity. This bourbon can range anywhere from 90 to 95; this is indicated on the batch number. This is the perfect bourbon for sipping with gingersnap, dark chocolate, and caramel flavors.