Friday, June 5, 2009

Tandoori Beer Can Chicken

Although it looks rather obscene, propping up a chicken vertically is a good roasting method. I worked in a kitchen store for several years, which had all kinds of gizmos and devices for doing just that. The most popular way is using a beer can, which is the way I always do it. The cooked chicken turns out very moist and juicy, with crispy skin. The slower cooking dark meat is closer to the heat, so the faster cooking breast meat is spared from drying out, and the whole bird is infused with flavor. Today, I chose tandoori spices to season the bird, however, the method is open to any favorite herbs/spices, not to mention soda cans if you don't have beer. I served my tandoori spiced chicken with basmati rice and a refreshing cucumber salad.
Tandoori Spice Rubbed Beer Can Chicken
1 tsp. cayenne
1 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground tumeric
1 (approx.) 4 lb. whole chicken
1 lemon
1 beer
Place chicken in a glass baking dish and rub all over with the juice from the lemon. Put the lemon into the cavity. Blend all the spices together and rub all over the chicken. Reserve any extra spice. Cover the chicken and refrigerate for 2 or 3 hours.
Preheat the oven or grill to 375 degrees.
Drink or pour out about half the beer. Dump any reserved spices into the can and punch a couple extra holes in it. Remove the lemon from the chicken cavity and place chicken over the beer can; balance it upright using the chicken's legs to form a little tripod.
Roast for about 1 hour following general chicken roasting guidelines.

Slice about 2 cups cucumbers and 1 cup onion.
Season with sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, a pinch
or two of cayenne,
and a good sprinkling of ground cumin.

Add about 1 cup yogurt.

Stir it all together, and serve.

This made the perfect amount of salad for the two of us, plus leftovers for Pritchard Parker's lunch.

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