I am a huge fan of cooking on cedar planks. From sides to main dishes to desserts, I love the flavor and aroma of cedar. I don’t go crazy with the cedar. I char it just enough to add a hint of the wood. It adds something different to grilled foods. Like these cedar planked asparagus. Easy as can be to make, they come out crisp-tender (or, to your liking) with a great fresh asparagus flavor.
You can easily change the flavor of your cedar planked asparagus by changing the seasonings or using infused olive oil instead. I sometimes like to add a good pinch of red pepper flake for a bit of heat. Lemon-infused oil adds a great citrus flavor. A few roasted pecans or walnuts add crunch and well, nuttiness. You can’t mess these up. Just don’t overcook them.
This super easy marinated chicken is exactly why I love using my Char-Broil Big Easy. I was serving salad for dinner, and wanted chicken to go with it. Not dried out, bland super market rotisserie chicken. Moist, tender flavor-packed chicken. And with as little fuss as possible. And this is it.
I don’t see any reason to use a super fru-fru Italian dressing for marinating the chicken. I used a 16 ounce bottle of generic dressing from our local grocery store. For $1, it added the perfect flavor, tenderness and juiciness to my chicken. Use any dressing (or even bottled marinade) you like, but stay away from anything that contains sugar or sugar-like substances. Sugar will cause the outside of the chicken to burn long before the insides are done.
I smoked a big ole bologna chubb not long ago. Of course I ended up with a lot of bologna. I ended up slicing it nice and thick, freezing some of it for later. Later as in ‘for the best fried bologna sandwich ever’ later. This is the sandwich bologna was invented for. Fried bologna with just a little bit of crunchy char around the edges. Melted gooey cheese. Crunchy BBQ chips and lettuce. And the tang of pickled chow chow. Mustard. Mayonnaise. All on white bread.
You must use white bread when you make a fried bologna sandwich. It’s a law. Or should be. Let’s face it, you didn’t make this sandwich because of it’s organic farm fresh ingredients. This isn’t fru-fru, this is a big ole honkin’ sandwich that you’ll love.
This Korean fried chicken using the Vortex was right up my alley. As always with the Vortex, the chicken is cooked perfectly. Tender and juicy and delicious. The batter makes for an incredible crunchy coating. I mean, crazy crunchy goodness! And the sauce? Score! Asian flavors with a great spiciness.
This Korean fried chicken isn’t no wimpy chicken. I added more sriracha than called for because, hey, I like a little kick! I admit that I doubled the sauce ingredients, and I did end up with a little sauce leftover which of course found it’s way onto chicken wings!
You can tame down the hot sauce and still great fantastic chicken. Or make half a batch mild, half a batch hot! No matter how you do it, it’s impossible to go wrong with chicken cooked using a Vortex.Impossible!
Combine the salt and water in a large bowl or container. Stir until the salt is dissolved then add the chicken. Refrigerate for 4 hours.
Combine 3/4 cup of cornstarch and 2 teaspoons of baking powder in a bowl or large baggie. Working in patches, remove the chicken pieces from the brine and pat dry. Transfer to the cornstarch mixture and coat well.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the remaining 1/2 cup of cornstarch, 1 teaspoon of baking powder and 3/4 cups of flour. While still whisking, pour in the beer and create a smooth batter.
Fire up your grill with the Vortex. Get the coals good and hot, just ashed over.
Remove the chicken from the cornstarch mixture and shake off any excess. Dunk into the batter a few times and shake off any excess. Transfer to the grill around the Vortex.
Once the chicken hits 165 F as measured in several locations, brush several times with the sauce. Alternatively, remove the chicken from the grill and dunk into the sauce.
For the sauce
Place all ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium heat.
Stir until combined. Keep warm until ready to use.
I must have had a bad fried green tomato experience as a child because I have not eaten them in years and years. Anita and I were in the produce section at the store and saw some really nice looking green tomatoes. Anita loves fried green tomatoes. So I grabbed a few to make fried green tomatoes with spicy Ranch dipping sauce.
We headed home with the tomatoes. And I have to say, any bad memories I have of fried green tomatoes are now long gone. They were fantastic. Crunchy and tasty, and with a nice lightly spicy sauce for dipping. I used Panko breadcrumbs for an extra crunchy coating on these fried green tomatoes with spicy Ranch dipping sauce. If you like yours a little less crunchy, just substitute regular bread crumbs. For extra kick, mix a little cayenne (or my favorites, smoked paprika or chipotle powder) into the bread crumbs first.
I think that like most people, I purchased my Char-Broil Big Easy for making Thanksgiving turkey. And I’ve sure made my share of fantastic turkeys using it, too. From spicy to savory, the Big Easy does turkey amazing, each and every time. This recipe produces a tremendous bird, filled with the flavors of Thanksgiving. It looks fantastic, tastes delicious, and is so moist and tender. All that and so very easy to make, you can’t beat the Big Easy time and time again.
When injecting the turkey it’s important to be consistent. You don’t want to bite into huge pockets of injection in one bite, only to get nothing in the next. Don’t rush the process. Take your time and get the injection in everywhere, from just under the skin, to deep inside the breast meat.
I use a heavy duty injector that has larger holes for injecting liquids that have big chunks of ingredients. Even so, it can be challenging and sometimes clogs. I recommend grinding your spice ingredients first so they are fine enough to easily flow through the injector.
Combine all ingredients. If your injector does not have large holes you will want to grind the mixture first, using either a mortar and pestle or spice grinder. Half of the mixture will be used for the injection, while the remaining seasoning will be using as a rub for the outside of the turkey.
For the injection
Combine all ingredients with half of the seasoning mix. Whisk well to dissolve the salt.
For the turkey
Inject the injection mixture evenly into the turkey. Get it everywhere.
Lightly rub the outside of the turkey with oil. Sprinkle with the remaining seasoning.
Fire up your Big Easy. Add the turkey to the Big Easy basket and lower into the cooker.
Cook for approximately 20 minutes per pound. Let the turkey reach 165 F for white meat, 175 F for dark meat. Remove from the cooker and let rest 15-20 minutes before slicing.
This recipe is for a 9-pound bone-in turkey breast. Larger breasts or whole turkeys may require that you double the amount of seasoning and injection ingredients. The cook time will also be longer. You can usually plan on 20 minutes per pound with the Big Easy.You will need a good injector for this recipe. One with larger holes, preferably.
I am definitely not one of those that thinks everything needs to be made from scratch. But that being said, I do enjoy the challenge and reward of making something that is a good copycat of something I can buy in my grocery store. Like this copycat Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce. I was making a big ole batch of smoked pork when I realized I didn’t have a sauce on hand. Well, in no time at all I whipped this great sauce together. It has the right consistency, just like the ‘real’ stuff. And it has that (nearly) same great flavor.
The great thing about making your own copycat Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce is that you can customize it for your tastes. Want it a bit more smokey? Add a tad bit (a very small tad bit) of liquid smoke. Maybe (like me) you want a bit of spiciness? Add more cayenne pepper or a few (long) shakes of hot sauce. Thinner? Stir in some water. Thicker? Don’t add as much water. Make it your own. I did.
I’ve made the ‘usual’ smoked nuts a number of times. You know, peanuts. Walnuts. Pecans. Those things. This was my first time smoking Hazelnuts. In fact, I’d never even thought about making them until I ran across a picture someone posted of a big batch of smoked Hazelnuts. They looked so amazing I could almost smell and test them. I’ve always loved Hazelnuts, so I figured I’d love them smoked even more and I was right!
You can shell and eat these nuts just as they are. And I certainly devoured a few handfuls. But, my main reason for smoking them was to use them in recipes. First up? A smoked Hazelnut butter for baked sweet potatoes!
As you can tell from the recipe, I didn’t add anything to the nuts before I put them on my smoker. They don’t need it. No oil, no salt and pepper. Just put them on ‘au naturale’ and let them go for a while.
For years I thought “Why in the world do I need a rotisserie for any of my grills?” Well, my 20 year old gas grill reached the end, and I decided to get a rotisserie with my new grill. And boy howdy am I so glad that I did! Besides making (of course) chicken and ham, I also get to make really cool treats, like these rotisserie roasted peanuts! These nuts are perfectly roasted, with just the right crunch and just the right grilled flavor.
You can make rotisserie roasted peanuts on either a gas or charcoal grill. If you’re using a gas grill don’t be afraid to add a few chunks of wood to get a bit of a smoky flavor. Don’t go crazy with it, though.
I have a Weber rotisserie. To make these peanuts I purchased a rotisserie basket. I’ve found it to be a must-have with a rotisserie. It’s perfect for potatoes, chiles and of course, peanuts! The link to the basket can be found below the recipe.
Well now, these little bites of yumminess didn’t last long. Grilled chive potatoes didn’t take long to make either. Creamy and tender inside, the potatoes had nice crispy skin. Covered in butter and chives, with just a hint of lemon, each one was sooooo good. I grilled the potatoes, but you can make them in the oven just as easily. What will I do different next time I grill some grilled chive potatoes? Probably nothing. Oh I might add a pinch of red pepper flake but that’s it. They don’t need anything else.
If you don’t have fresh chives just use green onions instead.