Tuesday, September 16, 2008

New Blending Station & Tailgating Recipe

If you have been in the market over the past two months, I'm sure you couldn't help but notice the construction area next to our spice cases. I am happy to announce that the "Blending Station" is now complete. It was worth the wait. Now that the construction is over, this is where you will be able to watch as we blend our many unique spice blends. Make sure you come by and take a look. I look forward to your comments.

While I'm at it I might as well put a plug in for the guys responsible. My buds Tony Zimmerman and Tiny Tim (yes just like Dickens) from AZA Construction built and assembled this masterpiece. (As of this writing, their web site is down. Thanks to the unusual Mid-West hurricane Ike that we experienced on Sunday.) Here is a picture that I took with my cell phone during construction, just to give you an idea of why I am babbleing over this new area of our store.

Here's a treat from Alaina Repic. Alaina is the manager of Herbs & Spice and Everything Nice and a recent Culinary Graduate.


Alright you football fanatic foodies, it’s time to don the apron and get to cooking up a spread that will tackle your pre-game hunger and sack your tastebuds. Yes, folks it’s that time of year again!!! It’s football time and no one knows how to party more than a diehard football tailgator. Whether you are enjoying the game at home or have made the pilgrimage to the pre-game parking lot festivities this recipe is sure to please the crowd.

Now, this recipe may be new to some and old to others but when done right it will have your whole team cheering for more. Beer Can Chicken. First things first, before even thinking about throwing my soon-not-secret-rub on the bird you need to soak this bad boy in some of the Col.’s Basil Pepper Garlic Vinegar. Not only will this add tons of flavor to the chicken but it will make it tender and juicy as well. Pour the entire bottle into a large zip lock bag along with the whole chicken (eviscerated of course) and seal it up sometime in the morning. You may flip the bag over a few times to ensure equal coverage. By the time you are ready to start cooking it will be ready to go after patting it dry. Now, for the spices. Below is my recipe for BCC Rub but you may use whatever you like.

¼ c. Smoked Paprika
2 T California Garlic Granules
2 T Onion Granules
1 ½ T Salt
1 T Black Pepper (ground)
1 t New Mexico Chili Powder (optional)

Combine the above ingredients and rub over the chicken, and under the skin. Sprinkle a bit in the body cavity and reserve the rest for the beer can. Speaking of the beer, let’s take a look at our fizzy friends. We have a wide range of choices when it comes to which beer (or cola if necessary) we use. While I prefer a dark beer (i.e. Guinness or Anchor Porter) a nice wheat beer will do just fine. The dark beer adds a depth and sweetness that a regular or light beer just can’t match. Now if you are adverse to beer you can use any cola you like. Either empty half or drink half the can and add the rest of the spices. The last step here is to take an entire head of garlic with top cut off and most of the paper removed and put it down the neck of the bird to prevent the steam from getting out

Now that you have prepped the bird and picked your liquid it’s time to assemble. You may have seen the contraptions they sell to stabilize the concoction but it’s not necessary by any means. It will stay upright because of the can. The only rigging you may want to do is tying the wings together in front of the bird (as demonstrated below)

As for your grill you will want to place an aluminum pan underneath the bird to catch the drippings and prevent flare-ups. The grill or oven needs to be at medium heat (oven @ 350°). The chicken will cook for about an hour and a half, instant thermometer will register 170 when inserted into the crease between the leg and breast. Remove carefully, remember there is a molten can of liquid to contend with. That’s it!!!

Beer Can Chicken goes great with potatoes and roasted corn. Try your corn with Chef’s Seasoning available at Herbs and Spice, you’ll never look at corn the same way again.

Colonel De Stewart

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