Perhaps ‘carrot candy’ would be a better name for these maple bacon carrots, done up right using the Char-Broil Big Easy. Who knew that carrots could be so addictingly good? Slightly sweet, slightly smoky with a little crispy bacon, these treats disappeared in no time. Fortunately you can fit up to two bunk bed baskets into a Big Easy so you can actually make a pretty good sized batch at once. You’ll want to make as many as you can. I used baby carrots, but you can also use full-sized carrots. Try to pick ones that are all roughly the same size or your cook times will vary. That’s why I went with the baby version. They’re all roughly the same size so they all got done at the same time.
For a little kick, sprinkle the carrots with a little bit of cayenne pepper or chipotle pepper powder just before serving.
Carrots (baby carrots or equally-sized big carrots, peeled and cut down to fit into a Big Easy)
Thin-sliced bacon (cut into thirds for baby carrots, use full-sized pieces if using large carrots)
Freshly ground black pepper
Maple syrup (use the Grade A real stuff, not the fake syrup)
Fire up your Big Easy.
Wrap carrots in bacon and sprinkle with pepper.
Transfer carrots to the Big Easy basket, bacon seam side down.
Place into the Big Easy and cook until the bacon starts to brown and shrink and the larger of the carrots is slightly tender, 25-30 minutes. I lifted the basket out and poked them with a long bamboo skewer.
Brush the carrots with maple syrup. I use a long brush for this. Just lift the basket up, holding it with one hand, and brush with the other. Return to the cooker and cook another 3 minutes.
Remove the basket from the Big Easy and remove the carrots to a platter to cool a bit. The bacon will crisp while they cool.
Weber has a line of marinade mixes that you add juice to that are really, really good. And they’re perfect for flavoring chicken before cooking it on the Char-Broil Big Easy. I picked up a package of each and used them to marinate my favorite, split chicken breasts. The garlic and herb marinade is mixed with lemon juice to produce wonderfully seasoned chicken. A hint of garlic, a hint of lemon, and a mix of earthy herbs. Since the Big Easy cooks at a high temperature you do have to watch that your chicken doesn’t char. One way to help prevent that is to not use marinades containing substances that might burn, like sugar or honey. The other is to rinse the chicken before cooking. Now, you’re going to lose a bit of flavor doing that, but if like me you’re going to remove the skin before eating, it really doesn’t make that big of a difference.
I don’t know when the idea of doing a stir-fry on the Big Easy first occurred to me. Probably late at night. Probably around the same time I came up with the idea of cooking bacon in the Big Easy. I wasn’t optimistic when I started, but boy was I ever happy when I tasted the final product.
Note: I doubt that using a wok on the Big Easy was something the original designers thought of. Doing so might violate your warranty.
So obviously you’ll need a wok. A wok big enough so it doesn’t fall into the Big Easy. In my case, I used one with a nice long handle and a good sturdy short handle. No fear of it falling in or sliding off. I took a paper towel and wiped down the inside of the wok with a little vegetable oil as I lit the Big Easy. It took no time at all for the wok to get super-crazy hot.
This being my first time trying this I decided to go the simple route. I wanted to prove the concept, and I did that and then some. I added a few tablespoons of oil into the bottom of the wok along with a head of cut broccoli and two sliced shallots. I gave it a good stir and let it cook. It was easy and oh what an aroma.
In about 6 minutes or so the broccoli was crisp-tender. I sprinkled a little red pepper flake over the top and served it up. A great side in under 10 minutes!
My only concern during my cook was that the Big Easy seemed to get pretty hot. My suspicion is that the wok is trapping most of the heat inside the unit (and hence my disclaimer at the top of this post). That’s great for cooking, but only time will tell if it’s a negative for the lifespan of my Big Easy.
I couldn’t have been happier with my first attempt at stir-fry on the Big Easy. You’ll be seeing me cooking this way a lot more in the future. If you try it, please let us Big Easy fans know your thoughts in the comments below.
Corn, glorious corn! Fresh sweet corn is everywhere and that means time to fire up the Big Easy and make some honey-butter corn-on-the-cob. A little added sweetness and ready in no time at all. I actually made this honey-butter corn (on the left) along with my Buffalo blue cheese corn (on the right) so that I’d have a nice mix of sweet and savory corn-on-the-cob for dinner. You can cook the corn at the same time you’re cooking something else in the Big Easy. Just place the corn in a Bunk Bed basket above your other food. Depending on what all you are cooking you can squeeze two bunk bed baskets into the Big Easy at once.
Note: To cook all 4 ears (8 pieces in all) of corn you'll need a Bunk Bed basket for your Big Easy.
4 ears corn-on-the-cob, husks and silks removed, cut in half
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon honey
1 pinch Kosher salt
Fire up your Big Easy.
Place the 8 pieces of corn onto pieces of foil.
Place the butter, honey and salt in a small saucepan over medium heat and stir until the butter is melted and the honey is dissolved. Brush over the tops of the corn. Rotate and brush the other side of the corn.
Seal tightly in the foil and place into the Big Easy basket.
Cook in the Big Easy for 20-25 minutes or until the corn is tender.
I absolutely love cooking corn on my Char-Broil Big Easy. It comes out perfect every single time. Juicy, hot and ready for whatever toppings suit my fancy. This time my topping of choice was inspired by Buffalo wings. A little Buffalo wing sauce, a little blue cheese and a little bit of butter and I’ve got a delicious side dish (the three pieces you see on the right in the picture below). The three pieces on the left is my honey-butter corn-on-the-cob. If you’re worried about Buffalo blue cheese corn being too spicy, don’t. The Buffalo sauce is there, you can taste it, but it’s not overwhelming at all, not in the least. The corn ends up sweet and buttery with that great blue cheese ‘funk’ and the hint of vinegary wing sauce. Yummy!
Weber has a line of marinade mixes that you add juice to that are really, really good. And they’re perfect for flavoring chicken before cooking it on the Char-Broil Big Easy. I picked up a package of each and used them to marinate my favorite, split chicken breasts. The Citrus Herb marinade is mixed with orange juice to produce wonderfully seasoned chicken. A hint of garlic and herbs and a hint of sweetness, it’s a nice, light refreshing marinade.
Since the Big Easy cooks at a high temperature you do have to watch that your chicken doesn’t char. One way to help prevent that is to not use marinades containing substances that might burn, like sugar or honey. The other is to rinse the chicken before cooking. Now, you’re going to lose a bit of flavor doing that, but if like me you’re going to remove the skin before eating, it really doesn’t make that big of a difference.
The Char-Broil Big Easy is a fantastic all-around cooker. And as much as I use it to cook poultry, that’s not all it does perfectly. This Cajun corn-on-the-cob is just another great side dish. As with just about anything on the Big Easy, it’s no-fuss and as easy as can be. The corn comes out packed with spicy buttery goodness, cooked perfectly. There is a nice little kick to Cajun corn-on-the-cob. If you’re worried it might be too spicy (it’s really perfect to me), cut back on the cayenne and red pepper flake. I wouldn’t eliminate them completely. That little heat balances well with the sweetness of the corn.
Well now, these were different! I’d never thought of stuffing mushrooms with chili. Not even in my dreams, where sometimes odd food things can happen. I have to say, they’re quite the addicting little bites. Further proof that the Char-Broil Big Easy isn’t just for poultry (but let’s face it, it does one heck of a good job at that!).
You could definitely spice up your version of chili-stuffed mushrooms. Use a spicy chili (you probably saw that coming) and shredded habanero jack cheese. Top the mushrooms with jalapeno just before serving. That’ll get the party going!