Monday, June 21, 2010

BBQ Beer Can Chicken & Carrots Vichy

BBQ Beer Can Chicken. You can see it there below. My sister made me painfully aware of the fact that she does not find the picture below the least bit appetizing... I suppose I can see her point, it's just that I really wanted to show you how brilliant the beer can really is, and I wanted you to see it! Do you see it peeking out down there? You can also see the tasty and very simple rub I massaged into the little baby. I've said it here before, I'm not a huge fan of chicken. If it's not seasoned quite heavily or just the palette for say curry or tacos, I'm usually just not that into it. I really like don't how 'fleshy' it can taste. I haven't completely lost all my vegan repulsions. Though a juicy, rare steak doesn't give me one problem anymore. I really can't make sense of it. But, I will end there by saying this chicken is amazing. And I like it. We've made it three times in the last month now! And it couldn't be easier or better in my opinion. And then there are the Carrots Vichy...



There is the start of them below. Carrots à la Vichy are basically thinly-sliced carrots authentically cooked in sparkling Vichy water, which is apparently mineral water that comes from the springs surrounding Vichy, Frances well-known spa city. Add some butter and sugar, then simmer it all down gently until the water reduces and the carrots are oh-so-perfectly glazed and without any added color. Sprinkle with parsley and then voila as the French would say. I stumbled across this dish at my new job surprisingly. I didn't use Vichy water of course, that would really call for some serious ooh-la-la but I did use San Pellegrino and I think my carrots were quite happy in it.



Okay, back to the chicken. As I just wrote, this beautiful grilled chicken couldn't be any easier. Simply choose the right chicken, you know, there is always the right one. Mine always makes itself known to me. I usually glance down in the refrigerated case and it's usually the first or second one my eyes land on and return to after a quick scanning look over. I pick it up, feel it, meet it. That's usually the one. Sometimes, you get lucky and the wrapping is clear so you can make sure there aren't any gross and unsightly big red marks or weird discolorations. For a girl who isn't always so crazy for chicken, my birds have to be gorgeous if you know what I mean.



I hope you had a nap or snack recently, I'm really yanking you around in different directions here. Chicken, carrots, chicken, back to carrots... Stay with me. So the carrots, basically, thinly slice about four cups of carrots. Barely cover with water, sparkling is ideal if you have it, and half a teaspoon of salt and simmer until al dente. Drain. Heat one-quarter of a cup of butter and two tablespoons sugar in a pan over medium heat until melted and mixed, then toss the carrots gently in the pan until coated and cooked through. Additionally, season with salt and white pepper to taste and garnish with minced fresh parsley. These are kind of like candy. And so, so good straight off the heat. Be ready to pop the little glazed, butter slices like caramel corn. They're that good.



Okay, back to the chicken. So, now that you've selected the right bird and brought it home. Get it out of the fridge. Grab a twelve ounce can of beer and drink about half of it. Fire up your barbie while you're at it. You need nice hot heat, mound the coals on one side of your grill by the way. You will place the chicken near the coals, but not directly on top of them. Rinse your chicken with cool water and pat completely dry with good paper towels. I'm a fan of white Viva. Set the chicken on top of the beer can, it will stand up nicely for you. Then, make a rub. If you already have a purchased one that's fine, we make our own mix with about two tablespoons of salt, two tablespoons of paprika, two tablespoons of brown sugar, and a good pinch or two of cayenne pepper. Some granulated garlic would be great in there as well. Mix it up. Then simply oil the outside of the chicken with a good amount of vegetable oil. Massage it around thoroughly and then sprinkle and rub on seasonings. That's it. It takes about ten minutes from start to finish. As I mentioned, place your chicken on the other side of the grill away from the coals, we put the breast side towards the coals. Cover and for a 4 pound chicken, it takes about a hour and fifteen minutes. All three times we've made this the chicken is always so juicy it almost seems wrong. It gets this great color and is much a like a rotisserie. Flavorful, tender, juicy, dare I even say succulent? You'll know it's ready when a knife inserted into the thigh produces clear juices. The thigh will also pull right out...



We got crazy and had a Thanksgiving in June. We had the chicken and carrots with buttermilk-mashed potatoes and Stovetop Stuffing. The stuffing is a bit embarrassing but it was our last plastic bag of the stuff. When we lived in our old apartment near the University, students would move out and live very miscellaneous boxes of things in the hallways or out in the front lawn. One day I came home and saw a large box of food items sitting at the base of the first flight stairs, tan cardboard box sitting on dusty hardwood floor, seemed innocent. I scored some good canned olives and for some reason grabbed a few bags of stuffing. For those poor, ramen noodle type meals, maybe? It isn't bad. I kind of like it's basic, gooey goodness. If only it didn't have hydrogenated oil...



So there you have it, BBQ Beer Can Chicken and Carrots à la Vichy. And, my thoughts on Stovetop Stuffing. My husband and I actually like this chicken so much we are considering making it on Real Thanksgiving as opposed to fussing with a turkey that somehow always gives me a headache. It's really, really good poultry. And that says a lot coming from me! Now that it's officially summer, well, almost, it's really the perfect time to start grilling. You could also serve this with that Barefoot Contessa salad I told you about! That and some lightly sauteed asparagus, a glass of crisp Pinot Grigio... Voila! Happy, happy summer, friends!



2 comments:

Mardi said...

Rachelle~that chicken was delicious that you made while here at home, I took it for my lunch to work. YUMMY!
We will be making that again for sure.

RachelleLouise said...

Hi Mom, thanks for commenting! It sure is good chicken. So juicy and tender! Let me know how it goes for you guys! xoxo