Beer Can Chicken with Cola Barbecue

Beer Can Chicken with Cola Barbecue

Level: Easy

Total: 2 hr 30 min

Prep: 1 hr

Cook: 1 hr 30 min

Yield: 2 to 4 servings

Ingredients:

One 12-ounce can beer

One 3 1/2 to 4 pound chicken

2 tablespoons Basic Barbecue Rub, recipe follows

2 cups cola Barbecue Sauce, recipe follows

Basic Barbecue Rub:

1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar

1/4 cup sweet paprika

3 tablespoons ground black pepper

3 tablespoons kosher or sea salt

1 tablespoon hickory salt

2 teaspoons garlic powder

2 teaspoons onion powder

2 teaspoons celery seeds

1 teaspoon cayenne powder

Cola Barbecue Sauce:

1 cup cola

1 cup ketchup

1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon liquid smoke

3 tablespoon steak sauce, (recommended: A-1 Steak Sauce)

1 teaspoon onion flakes

1 teaspoon garlic flakes

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions: 

Special equipment:  4 to 6 cups hickory or apple wood chips, soaked for 1 hour in water to cover, drained
  1. Pop the tab off the beer can. Using a church key style can opener, make a few more holes in the top of the can. Pour out half the beer into the soaking water of the wood chips. Set the can of beer aside.
  2. Set up the grill for indirect grilling and preheat to medium. If using a charcoal grill, place a large drip pan in the center. If using a gas grill, place all the wood chips in the smoker box or in a smoker pouch and preheat the grill to high until you see smoke, then reduce the heat to medium.
  3. Remove the packet of giblets from the body cavity of the chicken and set aside for another use. Remove and discard the fat just inside the body and neck cavities. Rinse the chicken, inside and out, under cold running water, drain, and blot dry inside and out with paper towels. Sprinkle 2 teaspoons of the rub inside the body and neck cavities of the chicken. Rub the bird all over on the outside with 2 teaspoons of the rub. If you have the patience, you can put some of the rub under the skin being careful not to tear it.
  4. Spoon the remaining 2 teaspoons of rub through the holes into the beer in the can. Don’t worry if it foams up, this is normal. Insert the beer can into the body cavity of the chicken and spread out the legs to form a sort of tripod. Tuck the wing tips behind the chicken’s back.
  5. When ready to cook, if using a charcoal grill, toss all the wood chips on the coals. Stand the chicken up in the center of the hot grate, over the drip pan and away from the heat. Cover the grill and cook the chicken until the skin is a dark golden brown and very crisp and the meat is cooked to an internal temperature of 180 degrees F, about 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours. If using a charcoal grill, you’ll need to add 12 fresh coals per side after 1 hour.
  6. Using tongs, carefully transfer the chicken in its upright position on the beer can to a platter and present it to your guests. Let rest 5 minutes, and then carefully remove the chicken from the beer can. Take care not to spill the hot beer and burn yourself. Quarter or carve the chicken and serve with Cola Barbecue Sauce.

Basic Barbecue Rub:

  1. Combine all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir to blend together. Store the rub in an airtight jar away from heat or light and it will keep for at least 6 months.

Cola Barbecue Sauce:

  1. Combine all the ingredients in a heavy non-reactive saucepan and gradually bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat slightly to obtain a gentle simmer. Simmer the sauce until reduced by 1/4, about 6 to 8 minutes. Use right away or transfer to a large jar, cool to room temperature, cover, and refrigerate. The sauce will keep for several months.

 

Cook’s Note

You can also barbecue a chicken on a can of cola, lemon-lime soda, or root beer.

 


Beer Can Chicken with Cola Barbecue
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Lumpia – Filipino Egg Rolls

Lumpia – Filipino Egg Rolls

Lumpia is the Philippines’ version of Egg Rolls.  Like so many other Asian countries the Filipino Lumpia comes in many varieties.

There is Lumpiang Sariwa or “Fresh Lumpia” that are very thin crepe like wrappers that are filled with stir fried vegetables, shrimp, meats, or a combination of them.  Lumpiang Shanghai are meat filled deep fried egg rolls that are tightly wrapped to look like thin cigars or are cut into smaller pieces when served as appetizers, they are usually served with a sweet and sour dipping sauce.  Then there are fried lumpia that closely resemble spring rolls.  Fried Lumpia can be filled with just about anything including ripe bananas which are actually called Turon or Banana Lumpia.

Fried Lumpia is a favorite in my house; I make them by the dozen and freeze them so we always have some on hand.  Making fried lumpia is pretty easy since I usually toss in whatever I have on hand including ground beef, green beans, tofu, carrots, bean sprouts, potatoes, and onions.  You can put any combination of meats, seafood, and veggies in a fried lumpia, it’s really not complicated.  Whatever ends up as my filling I always serve it with a garlic vinegar sauce, my family loves it!

Today I’ll share my version of Fried Lumpia.  I’ll list ingredients just remember they’re all pretty much optional and you can toss in whatever you prefer; but use at least 3 of the optional items in your filling.  You can buy frozen egg roll wrappers at any Asian Market, most packages contain 25 wrappers.

Fried Lumpia

Ingredients:

1 or 2 Package Egg Roll Wrapper – thawed

1 Lb. Ground Beef – but you can use pork, chicken, turkey, or shrimp instead

1 Small Onion Chopped

1 Tbs. Garlic Minced

2-3 Potatoes – Cooked and cubed (optional)

2 Cups Bean Sprouts (optional)

1 Package Firm Tofu – cut into small cubes

1 Cup Shredded Carrots (optional)

1 Cup Fresh String Beans – Thinly sliced (optional)

1 Cup Shredded Cabbage (optional)

1/8 Cup Soy Sauce

1/2 Tsp. Salt

1/2 Tsp. Ground Black Pepper

1 Egg slightly beaten (to seal wrappers)

Oil for frying

Dipping Sauce:

1/2 Cup White or Rice Vinegar

1/2 Tsp. Garlic Minced

1/4 Tsp. Ground Black Pepper

1/4 Tsp. Chili Pepper Flakes (optional)

Directions:

Heat about 1 Tbl. of oil in a wok or large skillet.

Saute chopped onions until they start to turn translucent.

Add minced garlic and saute for about 1 minute, be careful not to burn the garlic.

Add ground beef or whatever meat you are using.  If you are using shrimp add them later after veggies have cooked as shrimp cook quickly and will over cook if you have to cook veggies.

Add salt and pepper.  Cook until meat is well done and crumbly.

Add beans, carrots, cabbage if you are using them.  Cook until soft.

Add Bean Sprouts and cook until soft.

Gently stir in Tofu and soy sauce.

Remove from heat, drain liquid from pan, and set aside.

Thaw egg roll wrappers and remove from package.

Separate wrappers being careful not to tear.  Place on a plate and cover with a damp paper towel.  You will be using one wrapper at a time so keep the others under the damp paper towel to keep them from drying out.

Take one wrapper and place on flat surface.

Place about 1 to 1 1/2 heaping tbl. of filling along one side of the wrapper.

Fold over both ends and roll like a burrito.

Brush some beaten egg on the wrapper to seal.

Place on a plate if you will be frying the same day or place in freezer bag if you plan on freezing them for later.

Repeat until you use all the wrappers.

When you’re ready to fry heat about 2″ of oil in a pan or use your deep fryer.

If you are frying the ones you just made, fry them in hot oil until they turn dark golden brown.

Place them on paper towels to absorb excess oil.

Serve hot.

If you are frying frozen lumpia, carefully place FROZEN lumpia in the heated oil.  Do not thaw them as they will get too soft and fall apart.  Fry them until dark golden brown.

To make the sauce just add all the sauce ingredients into a bowl and stir.

Other options for the fillings include shredding sweet potatoes, chopped water chestnuts, sliced bamboo shoots,and pretty much anything you like.


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Chicken Paella

Chicken Paella

Paella is probably Spain’s most popular dish.  It originated in the Valencia region located in Eastern Spain but can be found worldwide specially in countries that were once part of colonial Spain namely Cuba and the Philippines where it is also call Arroz Valenciana.

The word Paella mean “pan” in the Valencian dialect.  It is usually made and served in a “paella” pan which is basically a somewhat flat shallow skillet with or without a cover.  It is typically made with Bomba rice, a short grain rice variety cultivated in Spain’s eastern region.  Traditional Valencian Paella includes some type of meat such as chicken, duck, or rabbit, and some type of green bean.  It’s iconic yellow colored rice is achieved by adding saffron threads while cooking.

In modern time Paella has been adapted to use ingredients easily found in different areas of the country.  One of the most popular, an my favorite is Paella de Marisco which is seafood mixed with the rice.  This usually has shrimp, mussels or clams, squid, and sometimes lobster; is usually omits the vegetables.  Then there’s Paella Mixta which combines meats including Chorizo (Spanish pork sausage), seafood, and vegetables.  In short these days you can pretty much put whatever you want in a pealla.  My husband prefers chicken or vegetarian Paella.

When I was growing up surrounded by grandmothers, aunts, and uncles many of whom were fantastic cooks, Arroz Valenciana or Paella was a treat.  It would certainly be on a party menu, specially at Christmas.  These days I usually have to get my Paella fix in Spain.  It’s always one of our favorites when we’re in Barcelona, Majorca, or any part of Spain.

But since our yearly visits to Spain will not be possible this year we’ve found ourselves missing our favorite Spanish foods.  That’s why I’ve been making tapas boards lately.  I’ve also been making Paella.  In fact I’ve been making it often enough that’s I’ve recently decided to order a paella pan.

Today I’ll share my recipe for Chicken Paella because it’s ingredients are probably the easiest to find.  In fact you may already have it in your kitchen pantry.  I mentioned that Paellas are typically made with Bomba rice, but it’s not always easy to find in the US, at least in Hawaii.  I usually use Japanese short grain rice, the type you use to make sushi which is always found at any Asian market.  Saffron is not easily found in regular supermarkets  because it’s pretty expensive.  I usually buy Saffron when I’m in Turkey or the Middle East where it’s readily available at the local spice markets at a reasonably lower price.  If you don’t have Saffron you can use ground Turmeric to tint the rice yellow, but don’t use too much as it will leave a different flavor than what you want to achieve.  I’d use no more than a teaspoon of turmeric powder dissolved in a cup of chicken stock.

Chicken Paella

Ingredients:

1/2 Tsp. Crushed Saffron Threads

1/2 Cup White Wine

1/8 Cup Olive Oil

6-8 Chicken Thighs Bone-In with Skin

1 Tsp. Salt

1 Tsp. Ground Black Pepper

1 Onion Chopped

2 Tbl. Minced Garlic

1 Tbs. Fresh Thyme chopped

1 1/2 Cup uncooked Bomba or other short grain rice

3 Cups Chicken Stock

Juice of 1 Lemon

1 Small Bag Frozen Peas

1 Red Pepper cut into strips

American Parsley – chopped (optional)

Lemon Wedges (optional)

Directions:

Stir Saffron into wine and set aside.

Heat Olive Oil in Paella pan or large skillet.

Season chicken thighs with salt and pepper.

Place thighs in heated oil skin side down and cook until golden brown, about 6-7 minutes.

Turn over and cook another 4-5 minutes.

Remove chicken from pan and set aside.  (You may have to cook chicken in batches depending on how big your pan is and how many thighs you are using.)

Add onions, garlic, and thyme to pan.  Cook for about 2 minutes, stir constantly to keep it from burning.

Add Rice and cook another 2 minutes while stirring constantly.

Add wine and cook until liquid is reduced by half.

Stir in lemon juice and chicken stock.

Place chicken skin side  up on top of rice, cover, reduce heat to medium.

Simmer about 18 minutes until rice is almost cooked, it should be “al dente”.

Remove cover and add peas and pepper evenly over the pan.

Turn up heat to medium high and cook another 5 minutes or until rice begins to brown on the bottom and sides.

Remove from heat and sprinkle with parsley.

Serve hot with lemon wedges.

This dish pairs well with a pitcher of Sangria or a nice bottle of fruity red wine or a Chardonnay for white wine lovers.


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Patatas Bravas

Patatas Bravas

Patatas Bravas is a favorite Spanish Tapa.  Tapas of course are small portions of Spanish food that’s usually served with cocktails at bars or as appetizers.  Or several types of Tapas can be cobbled together to make a meal.  I love Tapas!  It’s a great way to sample different types of Spanish food in one sitting.

Patatas Bravas is one of my favorites.  It’s a simple dish of fried or baked potato wedges or cubes in a spicy sauce.  I always order it when we’re in Barcelona or any other Spanish town or city.  But traveling may prove to be difficult this year and we won’t be going on our usual Med Cruise or other European vacations.  That’s why I’ve been making some of our favorite foods at home.  After all eating local foods is a big part of traveling!

Lately I’ve been on a Spanish food kick and Patatas Bravas has been on top of my to make list.  Everyone in my house loves it that it’s now become a family favorite.  I serve it as an appetizer and as a side dish, either way it’s delicious!

Most places serve it with a mayonnaise based Garlic Aioli, but I like it without.  You can make a simple Aioli by mixing together mayo, garlic powder, and lemon juice.  Salt and pepper to taste and garnish with fresh chopped chives.

Patatas Bravas

Ingredients:

6-8 Yukon Gold Potatoes – peeled and cut into wedges

2 Tbs. Olive Oil

1 Tsp. Minced Garlic

2 Tbs. Smoked Paprika

2 Tsp. Chili Powder

2 Tsp. Ground Cumin

1/2 Tsp. Salt

1/4 Tsp. Ground Black Pepper

1/2 Tsp. Crushed Red Pepper flakes

Directions:

Place potato wedges in a large pot and cover with water.

Bring water to boil and reduce heat.

Cook uncovered for about 8-10 minutes or until just tender. (you don’t want them too soft, they will fall apart)

Drain and pat potatoes dry with paper towel.

Place in bowl.

Toss potatoes in Olive Oil and Garlic until evenly coated.

In a small bowl combine the rest of the spices and sprinkle over potatoes.

Toss potatoes in spice mix until evenly coated.

Place potatoes on a baking sheet, spread out in a single layer.

Bake in pre-heated 375 degree oven for about 25 minutes or until crispy.  Stir potatoes about half way thru baking time.

Serve warm with or with out Aioli.

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Italian Beef Drip Sandwhich

Italian Beef Drip Sandwhich

Are you mostly at home this summer with a bunch of kids who always seem to be  hungry?  Are you looking for something different to make for lunch or dinner?  Something filling, tasty, and easy to make?  Maybe even something you can make ahead and heat up when ready to serve?  I think this Italian Beef Drip Sandwich may be just the thing to keep everyone full and happy!

Italian Beef Drip Sandwiches are pretty much like French Dip Sandwiches.  Mainly they’re beef sandwiches that you dip in beef broth.  Now I love a Roast Beef French Dip Sandwich, specially one with onions and cheese, but sometimes you need a bit of spice and these Italian Beef Drip Sandwiches do just that!  They add a bit of spice or more than a bit if you like it hotter, to your meal.

They’re easy to make and can even be made a head of time and stored in the fridge until you need them.  I usually keep some on hand in the freezer during the summer, you never know when you need to make yummy sandwiches.  You can make the beef in your Crockpot, on your stove, or in your Instant Pot (if making in an instant pot adjust the liquids so you will have dipping broth); the idea is to cook the meat until it’s falling apart and easily shredded.

Once you have the meat filling, and the broth which is from slow cooking the meat, all you need is some nice crusty bread (I prefer hoagie rolls) and provolone cheese.  You slap them together, toast until the cheese melts, and serve with hot broth for dipping.  I love to serve them with my homemade potato chips!  It’s hearty enough to make a filling dinner for the whole family!

Ingredients:

1 Chuck Roast about 3 lbs. or more if you want to freeze some for later

1 Tbl. Salt

1/2 Tbl. Ground Black Pepper

2 Tbl. Italian Seasoning

2 Tbl. Minced Garlic

1/2 Jar of Whole Peperoncini

1/2 Jar of Roasted Red Peppers

1/2 Jar of Pimiento Peppers

2 Tbs. Sliced Jalapeno Peppers – adjust this to taste

1 Box Beef Broth – use more if making in an instant pot

Provolone Cheese Slices

Crusty Bread Rolls

Directions:

Place all ingredients except bread and cheese into your Crockpot, stock pot, or Instant Pot.

If using Crockpot cook on low heat for 8 hours.  If using Instant Pot cook on stew setting.  If cooking on the stove top simmer it in a covered pot until the meat is falling apart, this should take at least 4-5 hours.

Remove cooked beef from pot and shred using two forks.  If using right away then following steps to make sandwich.  If storing for later use place in sealed container with peppers and liquid from the pot and refrigerate up to 2 days or freeze.

To make sandwiches cut bread in half and lightly toast in the oven.

Fill with bread with shredded meat and peppers, top with cheese.

Bake in 350 degree oven until cheese melts and the edges of the bread are toasted a bit more.

Serve with a small bowl of the hot broth.

To make later just reheat the meat, peppers, and broth in the microwave oven before putting sandwich together.

 


Instant Pot Italian Drip Sandwhiches
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