Sunday Funday Cooking

Evan and I had a fun day of cooking on Sunday after watching the US Women’s Soccer Team kick Brazil’s bootay! It was a great game for those of you that missed it. Be sure to watch them on Wednesday (11am CST) as they take on France in the semi-finals. Go USA!

We decided to make Beer Can Chicken (which I like to call Beer “Butt” Chicken for obvious reasons) from this cookbook, and Beer Soaked French Fries using this recipe. Everything turned out great even though we had a major hiccup with the fries. Luckily we were able to salvage most of them. Lesson learned: parchment paper is not the same thing as wax paper and will definitely burn/catch fire. Especially if you leave too much paper over the sides. Oops!

Beer Can/Butt Chicken
prep: 30 minutes    grill: 1 ¼ hours   stand: 10 minutes   makes: 4 to 6 servings

2 teaspoons packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon dry mustard
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
½ teaspoon dried thyme, crushed
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
1 12-ounce can beer (we used Budweiser)
1 3½ to 4-pound whole broiler-free chicken
2 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened
1 lemon wedge

1. In a small bowl, combine brown sugar, paprika, salt, dry mustard, pepper, thyme, and garlic powder. Drink or pour about half of the beer from the can. Add 1 teaspoon of the spice mixture to the half-empty can (beer will foam up).

2. Remove neck and giblets from the chicken. Sprinkle 1 teaspoon of the spice rub inside the body cavity. Rub the outside of the chicken with butter and sprinkle on the remaining spice rub.

Evan rubbing on the spices. Starting to get messy.

After the rub…very messy hands.

3. Hold the chicken upright with the opening of the body cavity at the bottom, and lower it onto the beer can so that can fits into the cavity. Pull the chicken legs forward so the bird rests on its legs and the can. Twist wing tips back behind. Stuff the lemon wedge in the neck cavity to seal in steam.

Ready to go on the grill.

4. For gas grill, preheat grill. Reduce heat to medium. Adjust for indirect grilling. If necessary, remove upper grill racks so chicken will stand upright. Cover and grill for 1¼  to 1¾ hours or until chicken is no longer pink (180˚F in thigh muscle). If necessary, place a tent of foil over chicken to prevent overbrowning. (For charcoal grill, arrange medium-hot coals around a drip pan. Test for medium hear about pan. Stand chicken upright on grill rack bove drip pan. Cover and grill as directed above.) Remove chicken from grill, holding by the can. Cover with fowl; let stand for 10 minutes. Use a hot pad to grasp the can and heavy tongs to carefully remove the chicken.

And here she is all cooked and ready to eat. Notice we used a pan to easily take the chicken outside to the grill and then back upstairs to slice her up! Boy was she yummmyyyyy!


Beer Soaked French Fries (from The Edible Perspective)
prep: 30-40 minutes    bake: 40 minutes to 1 hour  cool: 3 minutes   makes: about 4 servings

1 bottle Breckenridge Summerbright Ale beer (or similar)
3 russet potatoes
1 tablespoon minced garlic
3 tablespoons olive oil
1½ teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon black pepper

1. Preheat over to 425˚.

2. Scrub potatoes, and cut into thick slices. Leave the skins on.

3. In a large bowl, soak the cut fries in 1 bottle of beer. Let soak for 15-20 minutes, tossing 3-4 times.

4. Drain beer and toss with olive oil, garlic, salt, and pepper until well coated.

5. Line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil (again, do not use wax paper) and spread the fries out evenly. Use two pans if needed as fries should not be stacked on top of one another.

6. Bake for 40 minutes to 1 hour, depending on how crispy you like them, tossing 3-4 times.

7. Remove fries from the oven and let cool for 3 minutes. Season to taste and enjoy!

It was actually a pretty simple meal to make for how tasty it turned out. I also recommend Sprecher Root Beer. It’s the best root beer and made at a brewery in Milwaukee. It can be found at most local Jewel-Osco grocery stores in the Chicago area (I think). We will definitely be making this again soon!!

*All photos taken with my lovely iPhone 4 camera, hence the not-so-great quality. Maybe one day I’ll get a real camera (hint, hint).