Thursday, September 18, 2014

Birthday Dinner & Football

Like most families, Bev grew up in one that insisted your birthday meal be something special and she still likes to do that – ala Pat’s recent meal.  She’d been asking me what I wanted and several things were considered but I finally decided I wanted something good but very easy for both of us with little mess.

And a couple of days before the meal, rotisserie chicken with vegetables, all cooked on the grill, showed up on Penny’s blog at Lake Lure Cottage Kitchen and it looked like a great solution to my meal criteria.

I decided to cook two chickens and followed the recipe laid out by another Penny on her Comforts of Home blog with a few adaptations – more thyme into the cavity and fresh thyme and rosemary into the veggies along with the Herbs de Provence.  Please stop by both Penny’s blogs for photos and recipes.

I prepared the chickens and added them to the spit butt-to-butt, tightly to keep the goodies inside - I tightened them after this shot and once during cooking.

Add the veggies to a disposable pan, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with herbs and toss to coat.

The main idea behind this recipe is to follow these direction – “Place a disposable pan underneath the chicken filled with sliced potatoes, carrots and leaks,” so the drippings can season them and it is a great idea, but I failed to look at my grill closely prior to cook time.  As it turned out, my spit was not high enough to let the pan sit on the grill grates and I had to set it clear down on the burners.

Unfortunately this put them below the heat and I improvised by putting them over low, direct heat and added a separate pan to catch the dripping which I added to the veggies as they cooked - this did require them to be turned regularly.

I cooked the chicken to an internal breast temperature of 165*-170* and it turned out moist and tender.  Unfortunately, by the time I relocated the veggie, there was not enough time to get them totally cooked when the chicken was done.  We just picked out the more tender pieces and I thought they were very good, especially the leeks.

It was a good and easy meal, but the chicken needed more flavor so next time I’ll brine it and put flavorings under and on the skin, and I'll cover the pan with foil and start the veggies over direct heat sooner – removing the foil when the veggies begin to get tender.

It was a fine birthday (68 if you're wondering) and special by my standards - surrounded by loved ones, no demands made upon me, getting to do just what I wanted, and a good meal - not sure it gets much better.  Getting to do what I wanted mainly meant watching college football and WVU’s win over Maryland – it was ugly and frustrating to watch, but still a win.  Unfortunately, that evening, Tennessee’s young team, especially the offensive line, was totally manhandled by Oklahoma - WVU will likely have a similar experience this week.  Since coach Nick Saban and I share a hometown, maybe I'll become a Bama fan or I've always liked Auburn.

I hope all of your birthdays are special and you get to do just what you want.

Photos can be enlarged by clicking on them.

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by Almost Heaven South.


9/13 – 9/14/14 meal date


  1. Everything I tasted that night was very good, I thought. And you're right: the leeks were particularly good. I'm glad your special day was what you wanted. Love you!

  2. Happy birthday Larry. Sounds like you had an ideal day. We both request chicken for our birthdays too. If you're looking for a college team to root for - Roll Tide Roll. They're always a winner in my book and have been since the days of the legendary Bear Bryant.

  3. Happy Birthday Larry, nothing quite like chicken on the BBQ always a favorite here.
    Looks very yummy.

  4. Happy Birthday!! Everything looks wonderful and glad you enjoyed the day. Catherine

  5. Happy belated birthday Larry. Your meal looks fit for a king to me!

  6. It looks like my kind of birthday meal! Glad you had a great day. Happy be-lated birthday.

  7. Larry, We're glad that you had a great birthday! However, if it was me, even though the chicken was good, I would have let Bev do the special meal! Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

  8. Happy Birthday Larry. And the perfect celebration dinner.


  9. Happy Birthday Larry! I'm honored that you tried the chicken. Hope the vegies cook better next time. It must be birthday season as we are celebrating a milestone in October.

  10. Happy, Happy Birthday, May I suggest brining your bird? A few hourq brine will add moisture and flavor. Another method is to spatchcock the chicken and place over a bed of vegetables in a cast iron pan. A different method but still great results. Happy Birthday.

  11. I saw Penny's post and made a note that it was to be made soon! I love meals that are done on the BBQ. Glad your birthday was extra special.. (I noted your recommendations....)

  12. Happy Birthday!!! It looks like a grand way to spend your birthday. I like to keep mine simple too.

  13. Happy Birthday Larry! I love this idea of the drippings flavoring the vegetables. Now if I'd just take the time to rotisserie on the grill.

  14. Happy Belated Birthday, Larry! There's a popular chicken dish on the Egghead forum simply referred to as "The Chicken" that cooks a spatchcocked chicken over a pan of veggies like that. Too bad the rotisserie didn't line up right. I've I had that issue on mine too.


I appreciate and enjoy your comments