One thing I learned at a very young age, thanks to Hurricane Gloria (1985), is that you can cook pretty much anything on a grill. Moreso, the flavor explosion you get from a charcoal grill is even better. My dad LOVES to cook on the grill. That's where my learning started. I watched every day as he stood out on the deck cooking up all the food and all the meals for all the neighbors that were without electricity. We had a generator and so all the neighbors were coming over for hot showers and to sit for a cup of coffee. My dad always had a #Weber large kettle grill. That sucka can cook a lot of food at once even with a cast iron skillet in the middle. I'm sure if I went through the annals of my parents picture albums, I can find a few of that crazy week.
Thus, as an adult, my first gift from my parents when I got my first apartment, was a Weber grill. It was the smaller kettle, and had they had the extra money, it would have been the Yellow Simpsons one - as I was a huge fan and taught myself to even talk like Bart Simpson.
When I had that apartment, of course, I used my grill often. My culinary skills were then shown off when the great NorthEast Blackout happened in August of 2003. I was a newlywed. My husband was already hooked on my cooking, but then magic happened when I took a frozen dinner ( I believe it was #BanquetFriedChicken) and thus we named that dinner, Chicken in a Box on the grill. A little cooking spray in a cast iron skillet, spray the chicken a pinch, place it on the grill, and BAM!, dinner is served.
And so here I am at what this post is actually about! Last night I made another family favorite. Roasted Stuffed Chicken. Now, I do own the large weber kettle with the spit attachment. But since the bird was stuffed, I wanted to do the indirect heat method. So, I used the Weber Charcoal Baskets to get the party started.
We have the gas starter so that made this go quickly. The ashy coals you see on the bottom are #Kingsford Competition briquets - our new favorite - they last forever and ever. Regular Kingsford briquets on top.
As the coals got hot, I got to work on my bird. 7LB #perdueovenstuffer on sale this week so I was on it! As I let the bird sit on the counter for a little while, I prepared my stuffing. 4 TBSP butter, a small diced onion and a can of chicken broth.
I rinsed the bird off, put the innards in a small pot with water and rinsed the inside out. If I DON'T stuff the bird, I would put salt and pepper on the inside. When I DO stuff the bird though, I skip the inside step because I feel that it makes the stuffing too salty. Onward, I wear vinyl gloves to assist in the stuffing and tressing of the bird. The tressing part I'm not great at but I always get the job done. I use a small bamboo skewer and some butcher's twine to get the job done. A little salt and pepper and now I'm ready to prep the grill for cooking.
Everything is all set and now it's time to get this bird cooking!
Got the temp right where I want it.
A pinch hot when I took the picture but it was great at 350. I had another meal going inside the house so just poor timing on picture taking.
Now, I only use the pop up thingy as a guide. The only way to know for sure that the bird is done is checking with a meat thermometer. When cooking a stuffed bird, the extra time has to go into making sure your innards are cooked completely. #AltonBrown made me a better cook.
But he can't change my mind about a stuffed bird when this is what I was raised on!!
While letting the bird rest, I started the gravy. I LOVE gravy. My Family LOVES gravy. I am the Gravy Master in this group. And to have the gravy with the wonderful smokiness that grilling provides takes this dinner up to the next level.
I take the drippings and bring them to a simmer. Sprinkle just enough flour over it to make a rue. The key here is to add liquid very slowly as to avoid lumps. I start with the gizzards that I had been slow cooking on the stove. Straining them into the rue, I use a whisk to blend this all together. Once I run out of that liquid, I use chicken stock. Then just keep adding and whisking until I like the consistency .Wow, just realized that I didn't take a picture of my amazing gravy. You'll just have to trust me on this.
Here's the finished bird though!
A little tip I picked up along the way - put a cutting board in a cookie sheet. Keeps your countertops nice and clean and any extra juices collected are easily poured into your simmering gravy before serving! YUM!!
Dinner was fabulous. Just enough leftovers for a chicken and stuffing sandwich. Enough gravy left to make disco fries for the kiddos. It's 7AM and I am already dreaming about lunch and snacks..................