Thirsty Birds and Lazy Labor Days

Is it just me or did that summer fly by? I am celebrating a Labor Day WEEK instead of a weekend. The kid’s and I are off to Southern California to enjoy cloudless skies and beautiful beaches. That’s not stopping us, however, from enjoying the American tradition of a meal off the grill and a homemade cocktail in hand.

— Well — that’s my tradition, anyway. ūüėČ

Here are the recipes that I have on my menu. I strongly encourage you to give ’em a try before Fall officially greets us next month. Happy Labor Day!¬†

Beer Can Chicken;¬†also known as Drunken Chicken, Dancing Chicken, Chicken on a Throne, Thirsty Bird and Beer-Butt Chicken….there are some other adult themed names out on the web, but I try to keep my blog PG. ūüėȬ†

It’s exactly what it sounds like — a beer can, in a chicken. This method began to show up at college tailgate parties in the late 70s/ early 80s. As the BCC became more popular, it was picked up by competition BBQ teams that were¬†touring the United States and unknowingly spreading awareness about what would soon become a¬†massively popular dish. I share this recipe, mainly because you can’t go wrong. The chicken is always super juicy and tasty, it’s very easy to make, and it goes amazingly with just about any side. So, basically, what’s not to love?¬†If you like what you taste,¬†I’d suggest picking up Steven Raichlen’s cookbook entitled: ¬†“Beer-Can Chicken.”

Here’s a recipe off of the Food Network that’s easy and, of course, yummy: ¬†

Screenshot 2014-08-26 15.37.12

1 (4-pound) whole chicken
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
3 tablespoons of your favorite dry spice rub
1 can beer

Remove neck and giblets from chicken and discard. Rinse chicken inside and out, and pat dry with paper towels. Rub chicken lightly with oil then rub inside and out with salt, pepper and dry rub. Set aside.

Open beer can and take several gulps (make them big gulps so that the can is half full). Place beer can on a solid surface. Grabbing a chicken leg in each hand, plunk the bird cavity over the beer can. Transfer the bird-on-a-can to your grill and place in the center of the grate, balancing the bird on its 2 legs and the can like a tripod.

Cook the chicken over medium-high, indirect heat (i.e. no coals or burners on directly under the bird), with the grill cover on, for approximately 1 1/4 hours or until the internal temperature registers 165 degrees F in the breast area and 180 degrees F in the thigh, or until the thigh juice runs clear when stabbed with a sharp knife. Remove from grill and let rest for 10 minutes before carving.

The Lazy Labor Day

I just can’t refuse a homemade, summer cocktail when it’s this beautiful out!
Here’s a refreshing recipe¬†that will make your day.

Screenshot 2014-08-26 12.47.38

Serves 4

8 oz. Brugal Extra Dry rum
2 oz. simple syrup
10 basil leaves
1 oz. fresh lemon juice
4 oz. sparkling water


Muddle together basil, lemon juice, and simple syrup. Add rum and stir well. Pour into ice filled glasses, top with sparkling water and serve.


  Have a very happy and relaxing Labor Day! 



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