My Dad is a real meat and potatoes kind of guy, and doesn't stray from this beaten path very often. Although he appreciates good food and has a palette accepting of spiciness, he usually doesn't like anything too fancy or extraordinary. Many Dads fall into this category and thus I dedicate this column to them and the loved ones that cook for them.
Being a Dad myself, I immediately think of barbequed food when it comes to father's day. Instead of grilling up the same old cookout fare like hamburgers and hotdogs, allow me to give you some refreshing ideas to add some variety to your celebration.
A very popular recipe for beer chicken has been circulating for a while now.
It involves standing a seasoned chicken over an open can of beer. Closing the lid of the barbeque will allow the chicken to roast and have the moisture of the beer baste the inside of the chicken as it evaporates from the can. This produces a very juicy and flavouful chicken and is sure to be a popular item with Dad.
Another great idea for the barbeque is corn on the cob.
Most people boil cobbed corn, but how much flavour does water have? Zero. A better way is to have them steam in their own juices directly on the grates of the grill. The way to prepare this flavorful corn is very simple and provides a fantastic presentation. Remove as much of the silk as possible while keeping the husks of the corn in tact.
See FATHER, Page B2
FATHER, from Page B1
Soak the ears or corn for at least one hour in a pot of water to help prevent them from drying out. Remove from the water and place them directly on the preheated grill of the barbecue. With the ears intact, the cobs of corn will now steam in their own husks which will get somewhat charred, adding a smoky flavour. Depending on the temperature of your barbecue, this will take approximately 10 to 20 minutes (remember to rotate them). For the best presentation, pull back the husks but keep them attached. An optional mixture of butter seasoned with salt, pepper, and chili powder will add an extra kick of flavour and colour. One of my favourite barbecue side dishes is grilled red onion. With the help of a marinade, slices of this sweet onion variety get caramelized and sugary on the grill. A simple marinade of soy sauce and liquid honey will work wonders for you. Simply slice the red onions into 1 to 2 cm thick slices and insert two skewers per slice to keep them from falling apart into onion 'rings.' Mix the marinade and soak the slices for one to twelve hours, turning occasionally. Preheat the barbeque and grill on each side until caramelized. Season with salt & freshly cracked pepper and serve. These are just a few of the endless dishes that you can accomplish for a fantastic father's day meal. There are many unique and tasty recipes available to you on the internet and at the library, so take advantage of these resources. Dear Chef Dez: I love barbecued chicken with the skin on, however it always seems to get burned on the outside well before the center gets cooked. I know many people cook skinless chicken pieces and they have no problem, but I enjoy having the skin on. However, the fat from the skin promotes flare-ups, and thus gets burned. How can I avoid this without losing my enjoyment of having the skin? Tracey S. Abbotsford
Dear Tracey: There are two ways you can go about preventing this. One way is to use a combination of cooking methods between the oven and the barbecue. Starting the cooking process of the chicken in your oven will cook much of the fat from the skin before it even hits the grill. Lay seasoned chicken pieces in a baking dish and cook halfway through. Then transfer them to a preheated grill to get the flame-broiled taste and to finish the cooking process. Barbecue sauce is best added just before the chicken is cooked on the barbecue. Now, if this seems like a little bit too much effort, the other way is to use lower heat on the barbecue and place the chicken pieces on an upper rack (if equipped). This will take more time than the first option, however by doing all the grilling outside, your home will stay that much cooler.
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