Archive for April, 2012

Turkey gets burnished gold on the grill, and the method is effortless. You can literally put it on and forget about it (except for replenishing the charcoal every hour or so). The turkey is cooked in a roasting pan so that you can catch its drippings for the apple cider jus.

TIMING
Prep: 30 to 40 minutes (plus 5 minutes for rub)
Grill: 3 to 4 hours.

BBQ TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT
– Marinade injector
– Heavy-duty roasting pan with roasting rack
– Heat-resistant grill mitts
– Kitchen twine.

THE GRILL
Gas:
Indirect heat, medium (325° to 350°F)
3- or 4-burner grill – middle burner(s) off
2-burner grill – 1 side off
Clean, oiled grate
Charcoal:
Indirect heat, medium ash
Split charcoal bed (about 2 dozen coals per side)
60 to 80 replacement coals
Heavy-duty drip pan set between banks of charcoal
Clean, oiled grate on medium setting.

INGREDIENTS (MAKES 12 TO 14 SERVINGS)
4 cups apple cider
½ cup chicken broth
5 tablespoons butter, salted or unsalted
3 teaspoons Tuscan Rosemary Rub
1 fresh turkey, 12 to 14 pounds
Kosher salt and ground black pepper to taste.

DIRECTIONS
1. Heat the grill as directed.
2. To make the basting liquid, heat ½ cup of the cider, the broth, 3 tablespoons of the butter, and 1 teaspoon of the Tuscan rub in a saucepan over medium heat until the butter melts. Cool to room temperature. This can be made a day ahead.
3. Wash the turkey inside and out with cold water and remove any visible pockets of fat. Pat dry. Rub 1 teaspoon Tuscan rub onto the walls of the interior cavity. Set on a roasting rack in a roasting pan.
4. Strain the basting liquid into a small bowl. Fill the injector with as much basting liquid as it will hold. Inject 1 ounce (30 cc) into each thigh and drumstick and each side of the breast, making several injections into each part. Pour and rub the remaining basting liquid over the outside of the turkey.
5. Put the roasting pan on the grill away from the heat, cover, and cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast registers about 170°F, 3 to 4 hours, depending on the turkey’s weight. If your grill has a temperature gauge, it should register around 350°F during that time. If you are using charcoal, you will probably have to replenish the coals every hour.
6. When the turkey is done, use grill mitts to remove it to a carving board, and cover it with foil to keep warm. Remove the rack from the roasting pan and put the roasting pan on a burner heated to medium. Add the remaining 3½ cups apple cider and 1 teaspoon Tuscan rub. Bring to a boil, scraping any brown bits clinging to the bottom of the pan into the jus. Boil for 2 minutes, remove from the heat, and swirl in the remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper, and strain into a serving dish.
7. Carve the turkey and serve with the apple cider jus on the side.

Comments No Comments »

The pre-prep when making Peking duck, one of the epitomes of Chinese cuisine, includes pumping it with air, tying off the neck, and fanning it for hours as the skin dries. This process is so complex and arcane that culinary war stories hardly ever mention how the duck is roasted. This recipe doesn’t skimp on any steps and will no doubt provide you with your own battle tales, but the difference here is what happens to the flavor when you roast the duck over coals. The skin crisps like a single layer of lacquer, and the meat gets a smoky nuance that deepens its traditional salty-sweet profile. The recipe calls for serving it traditionally with hoisin sauce and pancakes. If you want to skip that presentation, the duck is delicious all by itself.

TIMING
Prep: 30 minutes (plus 5 minutes for Peking crackle)
Dry: 2 hours
Grill: About 1 hour.

BBQ TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT
– Small bicycle pump with a needle attachment, or a marinade injector
– Heavy-duty cotton kitchen twine
– Electric fan
– Roasting rack
– Disposable aluminum roasting pan
– Long-handled basting brush.

SHORTCUT
– To make a simpler version of Peking duck, see the Grilled Peking-Style Chicken.

CREPES
Makes about 12 crepes
¾ cup flour
¾ cup water
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3 eggs
No-stick spray oil for coating pan.

1. Mix the flour, water, and salt with a whisk in a medium bowl until smooth. Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Set aside for at least 20 minutes.
2. Heat a small, nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until very hot. Spray very lightly with oil. Make crepes in the hot skillet by pouring a few tablespoons of batter into the skillet. Swirl to cover the bottom of the skillet, and pour the excess batter back into the bowl. Cook for about 30 seconds; the edges of the crepe will dry and it will be set across the surface. Flip the crêpe and cook for 5 or 10 seconds. Slip onto a plate and make another crepe. Don’t spray the skillet with more oil until the crepes start to stick slightly, after about 6 crepes. Keep the crepes covered until ready to serve.

THE GRILL
Gas:
Indirect heat, medium-high (350° to 375°F)
3- or 4-burner grill – middle burner(s) off
2-burner grill – 1 side off
Clean, oiled grate
Charcoal:
Indirect heat, medium ash
Split charcoal bed (about 2 dozen coals per side)
Heavy-duty drip pan set between banks of charcoal
Clean, oiled grate on medium setting
Wood:
Indirect heat, medium ash
12-by-12-inch bed, 3 inches deep
Clean, oiled grate set 4 inches above the fire.

INGREDIENTS (MAKES 4 SERVINGS)
1 Long Island duckling, about 4½ pounds, visible fat removed
1 cup Peking Crackle
12 crepes (recipe at left)
2 scallions, roots trimmed, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons hoisin sauce.

DIRECTIONS
1. Extend the plunger of the bicycle pump and insert the needle just under the skin at the neck end of the duck. Depress the plunger, and the skin around the needle will puff up. Continue to pump air under the duck skin in the same way until the skin has been separated from the meat all over the breast and legs (see illustration).

Grilled_Peking_Duck_BBQ_And_Grilling_Recipes

2. Heat a kettle of water to boiling. Put the duck, breast-side up, in a strainer set in a sink. Pour the boiling water over the duck. Hook a chopstick under the wings of the duck to hold them away from the body. Tie a string around the neck and hang the duck by the string over a sink or a large drip pan. Put an electric fan in front of the duck and blow air directly on it for about an hour to dry the skin. 3. Brush the duck with half of the Peking crackle and dry for another hour.
4. While the duck is drying, prepare the crepes.
5. Heat the grill as directed.
6. Put the duck, breast-side up, on a rack set in a disposable roasting pan. Put the pan on the grill away from the heat, cover the grill, and cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast registers 165°F about 1 hour, basting with the remaining glaze halfway through. If your grill has an external thermometer, it should stay at around 375°F during that time.
7. Remove the duck to a cutting board. Carve it as you would a chicken (see page 184). Lift the skin from the meat and cut it into strips. Cut the meat into large, bite-size chunks. Arrange the meat on a platter scattered with scallions and strips of crisp skin. Serve with the hoisin sauce and crêpes for rolling.

Comments 1 Comment »

Spit-Roasted Whole Spring Lamb Overcome By Garlic - BBQ And Grilling Recipes

There is perhaps no greater culinary spectacle than a whole animal turning on a spit over hot coals. Roasting the whole beast also makes it easy to feed a crowd. The flavors here are some of lamb’s favorites: rosemary, garlic, and lemon. The garlic and rosemary are inserted into slits in the meat to infuse the whole roast with their aromas. Plan to make a whole day out of the spit-roast. It takes a good hour or two to set up the spit-roaster, season the animal, and attach it to the spit-rod. Invite some friends over to help hoist the animal to and from the spit-roaster. After about 5 hours of slow roasting and tending the fire, you’ll all be feasting on some of the finest meat you’ve ever tasted.

TIMING
Soak wood chips: 1 hour (optional)
Prep: 1½ hours
Grill: 5 to 5½ hours.

BBQ TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT
– Spit-roaster (see Tips)
– 60 pounds of charcoal, 5 hours’ worth of gas, or about a quarter cord of wood
– 16 cups (4 quarts) wood chunks or chips, preferably oak or hickory (optional)
– Wire (18 to 20 gauge)
– Pliers
– Wire cutters
– Heat-resistant grill mitts (preferably heatproof silicone)
– Long-handled basting brush.

TIPS
– Order the lamb several weeks ahead of your planned roasting day. A good country butcher or a farmer who sells at farmers’ markets should be able to get you one. Order it dressed for spitroasting, which means it will be gutted and skinned with the head and feet removed. Try to buy a lamb that’s less than 30 pounds to keep it to a manageable size. If you can’t find one locally, Jamison Farm in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, raises some of the country’s best grass-fed lamb, and they ship small whole lambs year round.
– Let the lamb come to room temperature before firing up the spitroaster. Otherwise, you’ll waste some of your fuel just warming the meat up to room temperature. It may be easiest to get the lamb the day before you cook it.
– The lamb can be mounted on the spit with its fore and hind legs extended, as if the animal were flying through the air (as described in the recipe here). Or it can be positioned with the forelegs tucked under its chin and hind legs tucked up under its belly. This second position is a bit more dignified but less dramatic. Tell the butcher which way you want it, so the lamb can be positioned that way before rigor mortis sets in.
– Lambs have very thin ribs with very little meat. The shoulders and thighs are much thicker, which is why the heat is placed there (in the 4 piles of coals) and away from the rib cage. On the off chance that the rib cage begins to brown as much as the thighs and shoulders after only 1 to 2 hours of roasting, cover the rib cage with aluminum foil (shiny-side out) to help keep the rib meat from overcooking. Remove the foil during the last 30 minutes to 1 hour to finish cooking the ribs.
– You’ll need a large work surface for preparing and serving the lamb. A picnic table works nicely. Cover the table with foil, a plastic dropcloth, or another cloth to protect it.
– If you can borrow a spit-roaster, that’s the easiest way to go. Otherwise, you can rent one from a local all-purpose renter such as Taylor Rental. It’ll cost $75 to $100 for the day.
– The spit rods for some spit-roasters have holes drilled into them every 6 inches or so. These holes make it much easier to attach the animal to the rod – and to remove it. Large skewers are pushed through one side of the animal, then through the holes in the rod, and then out through the other side of the animal. If you can find a spit-roaster of this sort, it will save you the trouble of tying the animal’s backbone to the rod with wire and then removing the wire before serving.
– Some spit-roasters have skewers that mount onto the spit from the pointed end of the rod only. If that’s the case with your spitroaster, slide the rear skewer onto the rod before you push the rod through the lamb. After wiring the lamb to the rod, slide on the other skewer.
– Carving up the cooked whole lamb may seem like a daunting task, but it really isn’t. A meat cleaver or other heavy, sharp knife makes the job go pretty quickly. First, make a few primal cuts. Remove the hind legs and forelegs/shoulders by driving the knife right through the primary joints. Each leg will serve 2 to 3 people.
If you’d like to serve the ribs, cut them from the backbone by standing the lamb on its neck and driving the knife down as close to the backbone as possible to strip the ribs from the backbone. Cut each half of the rib cage into 2 or 3 sections before serving. There isn’t much meat on the ribs of a 25-pound lamb, but those who love to lick the bones clean will enjoy them. Next, scrape the meat from the loin, back, and shoulder areas. The meat will be embedded all along the backbone. Finally, if you’d like to make lamb stock, hack off the neck with your cleaver. It can be frozen for a month before you toss it into the stockpot.

THE GRILL
Gas: Indirect, medium on a gas-fired spit roaster
Charcoal:
Indirect, medium on a charcoal spit roaster,
charcoal bed split into 4 corners (about 2 dozen coals per corner)
Wood: Indirect, medium on a wood-fired spit roaster, coal bed split into 4 corners.

INGREDIENTS (MAKES 12 SERVINGS)
12 branches fresh rosemary
3 heads garlic, separated into cloves and peeled
1 small whole lamb, 25 pounds or so, dressed for spit-roasting
2 lemons, halved
½ cup olive oil, plus more if needed
3 tablespoons kosher salt
1½ tablespoons ground black pepper
3 scallions, roots trimmed.

DIRECTIONS
1. Strip the leaves from 8 of the rosemary branches and put the leaves in a food processor, along with the peeled cloves from 2½ heads of garlic. Pulse until finely chopped. (Make and refrigerate up to 2 days ahead to get a jump on things.)
2. Put the lamb on a large work surface with the chest cavity up. Squeeze the juice from the lemons into a bowl, discarding the seeds but saving the rinds. Rub half of the lemon juice all over the inside of the lamb cavity and inner thighs. Rub the entire cavity with¼cup of the olive oil. Sprinkle the cavity with one-third of the garlic mixture, 1 tablespoon of the salt, and 2 teaspoons of the pepper. Put the scallions, remaining 4 branches rosemary, remaining peeled garlic cloves, and the spent lemon rinds into the cavity.
3. Push the spit rod through the lamb’s rear, along the cavity parallel to the backbone, and out through the neck or upper chest. Lay the lamb on its side with the cavity facing you so that you can wire the backbone to the spit rod. Position an 8-inch length of wire in the center of the cavity. Insert the wire through the inside of the lamb near the backbone and rod. When the wire pokes through the outside of the lamb, bend the wire around the outside of the backbone and push it back through the lamb so that the entire length of wire is wrapped around the backbone and rod. Use pliers to twist the two ends of the wire together, securing the wire very tightly around the spit rod. Repeat this process at roughly 4-inch intervals toward the rear and front of the animal until the backbone is securely fastened to the spit rod.
4. Slide the spit rod’s skewers over the front and rear ends of the rod. Push the skewers firmly into the shoulders and thighs or hips of the lamb, then tighten the skewers onto the rod.
5. Attach the hind legs and forelegs to the rod with wire, twisting the ends of the wire until secured. Attach the neck to the rod in the same way.
6. Wire the lamb cavity shut by sewing from one end to the other with one long piece of wire. Twist each end of the wire with pliers to secure it. (You could also sew the cavity shut with kitchen twine or heavy cotton string and a large needle.)
7. Make 20 to 30 small, ½-inch-deep slits all over the outside of the lamb, especially around the shoulders and legs. Use your fingers to stuff each slit with the remaining garlic mixture (be mindful of the sharp ends of the wire as you work). Rub the remaining lemon juice all over the outside of the lamb. Rub all over with the remaining¼cup olive oil, then sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons salt and 2½ teaspoons pepper.
8. If using wood chunks or chips, soak them in water for 1 hour. Heat the spit-roaster as directed. If using charcoal, light about 30 pounds (1½ large bags) of charcoal. When the coals are just ashed over, rake them into 4 piles near the 4 corners of the firebox. 9. Attach the spitted lamb to the roaster so that the lamb rests 1 to 2 feet above the coals. If necessary, re-rake the coals to position the 4 piles just outside the shoulders and thighs so that the lamb cooks by indirect heat.
10. Roast over indirect heat for 5 to 5½ hours, turning slowly but constantly. Add a few pounds of charcoal (about 2 dozen briquettes) to each pile when the old coals begin to burn low, about every hour, letting the charcoal ignite naturally. If using wood chunks or chips along with charcoal, add the soaked chunks to the hot coals every hour or so. After about 2 hours, re-rake the coals to position them directly beneath the lamb. Make 2 large piles beneath the shoulders and legs, connected by a shallow, narrow strip of coals beneath the ribs. During the last hour of cooking, if the lamb is not browning sufficiently, baste it all over with additional olive oil. When done, the meat should be well browned on the outside and tender inside, with some pink meat only near the bones. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest parts of the thighs and shoulders should register about 150° to 160°F.
11. Transfer the lamb to a large, clean work surface (see Tips) and let rest for 20 minutes. Using wire cutters and pliers, remove the wire from the legs and neck. Remove the wire that sewed the cavity shut and the wire from around the backbone (you may be able to cut it from outside the animal instead of inside). Remove the spit’s skewers, then pull out the spit rod. Be sure all of the wire is removed before serving.
12. Carve the meat from the bones, or scrape it off in chunks, and serve.

SPIT-ROASTING 101
This technique is no doubt one of the earliest methods of cooking meat. The entire animal, or a large cut of it, is suspended over a fire and rotated to cook it evenly. It’s a convenient way to feed a crowd.
The trick with spit-roasting, as with any large roast, is to cook the meat through and brown the outside yet retain the flavorful juices inside the meat. It helps to think of these as two separate steps in the process. Each step requires a different type of heat. Browning the outside is best done over direct heat. Cooking the meat through to the bone, however, is best done by indirect heat to help prevent burning. Each step is simply a matter of managing the heat that reaches the animal. We prefer to cook whole animals slowly via indirect heat for at least half or, preferably, most of the cooking time. That means either (a) spreading out the coals so that the heat surrounds the animal instead of coming from directly beneath it, or (b) raising the animal high enough above the coals so that the meat heats slowly rather than quickly. When using charcoal or wood, we like to spread the coals so that the heat surrounds the animal. It’s just easier to move the heat than to move the meat.
A note on marinating and basting. We believe that both marinating and basting are naturally achieved when spit-roasting a well-seasoned animal. If you include some lemon juice or another acidic ingredient along with your seasonings, the roasting time is long enough that the seasonings rubbed into the animal’s surfaces penetrate and flavor the meat just as much as they would by marinating. So marinating is not strictly necessary. You could, for the sake of convenience, season the animal a day in advance of roasting it, and you may get a bit more flavor penetration that way.
As for basting, the animal should adequately baste itself on the spit. When turned steadily near the indirect heat of the coals, the animal’s outer layers of fat slowly melt and roll around the meat, basting the meat and keeping it moist. If you happen to notice any dry areas on the surface of the animal during the last half of cooking, drizzle a little oil over the area to ensure even browning.

Comments No Comments »

No one knows lamb like the Greeks, Turks, and Arabs of the Middle East. Here’s how a leg of lamb might be grilled over a live fire by bedouins (Arab nomads) – rubbed with saffron, caraway, and cardamom and served with a relish of preserved lemons and coriander. Although nomads would roast the lamb leg over a wood fire on a spit, we’ve given directions for backyard grilling using a charcoal or gas grill with a rotisserie setup. The beauty of rotisserie grilling is that the roast bastes itself as the surface fat melts and rolls around the meat. Lamb legs aren’t always completely covered with fat, so even when using the rotisserie we like to baste the meat with some olive oil now and then to ensure even browning. If you don’t have a rotisserie, cook the lamb on your grill using medium indirect heat, turning and basting every 20 minutes or so. Alternatively, you could roast the leg over a wood fire with a spit.

TIMING
Prep: 5 minutes (plus 10 minutes for marinade and relish)
Rest before grilling: 1 to 2 hours
Grill: 1 to 1½ hours.

BBQ TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT
– Rotisserie for grill
– Long-handled basting brush
– Heavy-duty heat-resistant gloves.

TIPS
– If a whole leg of lamb is too big for your rotisserie (or just too much meat), use a half leg (4 to 5 pounds) and reduce the cooking time by 30 minutes or so. We prefer the sirloin or butt end (near the hip) because the meat is more tender. Of course, it doesn’t have the classic protruding bone of the shank half.
– If you want to grill-roast only a half leg but think you’ll use the rest of the leg meat for other meals, buy a whole leg and have your butcher cut a few thick lamb chops from the sirloin end of the leg. Then roast the rest of the leg.
– To carve a leg of lamb, slice off any bits of meat from the thicker sirloin end, then grip the shank (bone) with a kitchen towel and your hand. Run the knife from the bone end to the sirloin end as close to the bone as possible to loosen one side of the leg meat from the bone. Leave the meat attached to the bone and make thin slices down through the loosened leg meat. Repeat on the other side of the leg, and then cut any remaining meat from the bone.

GETTING CREATIVE
– For smoky-tasting leg of lamb, soak 1 to 2 cups of oak wood chunks or chips in water for 1 hour, then add half to the coals at the beginning of grilling and half after the first batch dies out. If using gas, put the chips in a smoker box or wrap them in perforated foil and put directly over one of the heated burners.
– You could serve the lamb without the lemon relish, but we like its tart, salty counterpoint. To make a pan sauce instead, spoon off almost all of the fat from the drip pan and then scrape the remaining contents of the drip pan into a small saucepan. Also add any juices from the platter on which the meat has been resting. Bring to a boil and add about½ cup red wine and½ cup chicken stock. Boil until the liquid is reduced to about¾ cup. (Once the liquid boils, it also helps to pour the hot liquid into the drip pan and scrape the drip pan thoroughly. This deglazes extra
flavor from the drip pan. Pour the contents back into the saucepan. If you know ahead of time that you’ll be making a pan sauce, you could replace the aluminum drip pan with a shallow roasting pan that you can boil liquids in).

THE GRILL
Gas:
Indirect heat, medium (325° to 350°F)
3- or 4-burner grill – middle burner(s) off
2-burner grill – 1 side off
Heavy-duty drip pan set between banks of charcoal
Grate removed
Rotisserie set up
Charcoal:
Indirect heat, medium ash
Split charcoal bed (about 2 dozen coals per side)
20 replacement coals
Heavy-duty drip pan set between banks of charcoal
Grate removed
Rotisserie set up
Wood:
Indirect heat, medium ash
12-by-12-inch bed, 3 inches deep
Additional wood for replacement
Rotisserie set up.

INGREDIENTS (MAKES 8 TO 10 SERVINGS)
½ cup Bedouin Dry Marinade
1 bone-in whole leg of lamb, 5 to 6 pounds, surface fat trimmed to ¼inch
½ cup olive oil
2 cups Preserved Lemon Relish.

DIRECTIONS
1. Scatter the dry marinade all over the meat, patting it in with your fingers. Cover loosely and let rest at room temperature for 1 to 2 hours.
2. Heat the grill as directed, setting the drip pan(s) in the grill below the area where the lamb will rotate.
3. Slide the lamb leg onto the skewer of the rotisserie setup. Secure according to the manufacturer’s directions.
4. Put the skewered lamb into the rotisserie assembly. The lamb should be suspended away from direct heat and turn freely above the drip pan(s) as the rotisserie rotates. Cover the grill and cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the leg (without touching the bone) registers about 125°F for medium-rare or 135°F for medium, 1 to 1½ hours total. Brush the lamb with the olive oil every 30 minutes or so. If your grill has an external thermometer, it should stay at around 350°F. If you are using charcoal, you will probably have to replenish the coals after the first hour.
5. Remove the rotisseried lamb to a large serving platter, cover loosely with foil, and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the skewers.
6. Carve the lamb (see Tips), and serve with the lemon relish.

Comments No Comments »

The gustatory folly known as crown roast, made by grafting two or more racks in a ring, forcing the ribs to arch up and out like the spikes of a crown, is more impressive than it is difficult, and it is one of the few grand celebratory presentations that feed a crowd and spend less than an hour roasting. The speedy cooking time is due to its form. Because of the center hole, heat is able to reach all sides of the meat, so regardless of how many racks you use to form the crown, the roast never takes much longer to cook than a single rack would. The only thing that will slow it down is stuffing the center, which blocks the heat circulation. For that reason we recommend grilling the stuffing around the roast and filling the center just before you bring it to the table.

TIMING
Prep: 30 to 45 minutes (plus 5 minutes for rub)
Grill: About 45 minutes.

BBQ TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT
– Grill screen or grill pizza pan
– Heavy-duty aluminum foil
– Heat-resistant bowl, about 6 inches in diameter, to support the center of the roast
– 2 sturdy long-handled spatulas.

TIP
– A frenched rack of lamb is one in which the meat, fat, and membrane from the ends of the rib bones have been stripped away, exposing about 2 inches of cleaned bare bone, which can be used as a handle when eating the lamb chops.

TYING A CROWN
Most butchers will be happy to assemble a crown roast for you, but if you want to do it yourself, you will need:
– Heavy-duty thread (or thin, sturdy kitchen twine)
– Large needle with a large eye, preferably curved (an upholstery needle works great)
– Heavy-duty cotton kitchen twine
– 2 to 3 racks of lamb, frenched.
1. On the nonmeaty side of the racks, make small slits into the meat (no more than½ inch long and¼ inch deep) between the ends of the bones. These slits will spread open when the rack is curved into a crown.
2. Butt the end of one rack up to another. Using the bones as anchors, sew the ends together, using as few stitches as possible. Repeat with as many racks as you are using.
3. Stand the sewn racks so that the cleaned ends of the bones are pointing upward. Bend the meat into a ring, with the meaty side facing inward. As the ring forms, the rib bones will arch outward. To close the ring, tie the ends together, using the bones as anchors. Stitch as needed to secure them in place. When complete, the tied roast resembles a crown (see illustration).

Crown Roast Of Lamb Embedded With Figs And Forest Herbs - BBQ And Grilling Recipes
THE GRILL
Gas:
Indirect heat, medium (325° to 350°F)
3- or 4-burner grill-middle burner(s) off
2-burner grill-1 side off Clean, oiled grate
Indirect heat, medium ash
Split charcoal bed (about 2 dozen coals per side)
20 replacement coals
Charcoal: 20 replacement coals
Heavy-duty drip pan set between banks of charcoal
Clean, oiled grate on medium setting.

INGREDIENTS (MAKES 9 TO 13 SERVINGS – 2 TO 3 RIBS PER SERVING)
1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
½ cup fresh mint leaves
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary leaves
1 head (about 25 cloves) garlic, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon Provençal Herb Rub
¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil
5 Calimyrna figs, hard stem ends removed, coarsely chopped
3 racks of lamb, about 1½ pounds each, frenched and tied into a crown roast (see Tip, and “Tying a Crown,” right)
3½ to 4 pounds fingerling or new potatoes, washed and dried, halved if large
Oil for coating grill grate and screen.

DIRECTIONS
1. Put the parsley, mint, rosemary, and garlic in a food processor and chop finely (or you can chop them by hand). Add the herb rub and olive oil and process just until combined. Remove all but 2 tablespoons to a bowl. Add the figs and process until finely chopped. Put in another bowl.
2. Heat the grill as directed.
3. Using a thin-bladed knife, make a hole in the meaty part of the lamb right in front of each rib. Stick your pinky into the holes to widen them, and fill the holes with the fig mixture. Wrap small squares of foil around the exposed bones to keep them from scorching.
4. Toss the potatoes with 1/3 cup of the herb mixture and rub the remaining herb mixture all over the meaty parts of the lamb. Oil the grill screen and put the lamb in the center. Insert the heat-resistant bowl in the center of the crown to help it hold its shape.
5. Brush the grill grate and coat it with oil. Put the roast (on the screen) on the grill away from the heat, cover, and cook for 15 minutes. Put the potatoes around the roast directly over the fire, cover, and cook for 15 minutes more. Remove the bowl from the center of the crown, and turn the potatoes. Cover and cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted into a thick part of the meat registers about 130°F and the potatoes are browned and tender, about 15 minutes more. If your grill has a temperature gauge, it should stay between 350° and 375°F.
6. Using 2 spatulas, remove the roast to a large serving platter. Remove the string, and fill the center of the ring with the potatoes, if desired for presentation. Cut into chops, removing any string or thread from the lamb. Carve and serve.

Comments No Comments »

TIMING
Prep: 45 minutes (plus 40 minutes for roasting garlic)
Grill: About 1½ hours.

BBQ TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT
– Heavy-duty aluminum foil
– Heavy-duty heat-resistant gloves.

THE GRILL
Gas:
Indirect heat, medium (325° to 350°F)
3- or 4-burner grill-middle burner(s) off
2-burner grill-1 side off Clean, oiled grate
Charcoal:
Indirect heat, medium ash
Split charcoal bed (about 2 dozen coals per side)
20 replacement coals
Heavy-duty drip pan set between banks of charcoal
Clean, oiled grate on middle setting
Wood:
Indirect heat, medium ash
12-by-12-inch bed, 3 inches deep
Additional wood for replacement
Clean, oiled grate set 4 inches above the fire.

INGREDIENTS (MAKES 12 SERVINGS)
1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
1¼ cups boiling water
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 large Spanish onion, finely chopped (about 2½ cups)
1½ pounds cremini mushrooms, halved or quartered, depending on size
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves
1 tablespoon coarsely chopped roasted garlic (page 392)
1 tablespoon truffle oil
Kosher salt and ground black pepper to taste
¾ cup Arborio or Carnaroli rice
1 cup mascarpone
1 cup heavy cream
4 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated (1 cup)
¼ teaspoon grated nutmeg
1 pumpkin (flat rather than round and at least 12 pounds), with a stem
8 ounces Italian fontina cheese, shredded (2 cups).

DIRECTIONS
1. Soak the dried porcini mushrooms in the boiling water in a medium bowl until softened, about 10 minutes. Drain, retaining the soaking liquid, and chop coarsely.
2. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and sauté until tender, about 3 minutes. Add the cremini mushrooms and rosemary, and sauté until the mushrooms lose their raw look. Remove from the heat and stir in the roasted garlic, truffle oil, reserved soaked mushrooms, salt, and pepper; set aside.
3. Combine the reserved mushroom soaking liquid with enough water to measure 3 cups. Bring to a boil in a large saucepan, and add a big pinch of kosher salt and the rice. Boil until the rice is tender, about 10 minutes. Drain, and mix the rice with the mascarpone, cream, Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, and nutmeg. Correct the seasoning with salt and pepper; set aside.
4. Heat the grill as directed.
5. Remove the stem end from the pumpkin and clean the interior cavity of seeds and pulp, just as you would if you were preparing to carve it as a jack-o’-lantern. Using a big spoon, scrape the flesh from the inside of the top half of the pumpkin, reducing its thickness by about half. Allow the scraped flesh to collect on the bottom, which will help the whole pumpkin roast more evenly. Cut a slice from the interior of the pumpkin’s lid, reducing its thickness by half, and place the slice in the pumpkin, on the bottom.
6. Set the pumpkin on a sheet of heavy-duty foil folded in fourths to make a square large enough to cradle the bottom of the pumpkin. Season the interior of the pumpkin with salt and pepper and scatter half of the fontina over the bottom. Fill the pumpkin with alternating layers of rice mixture and mushrooms, ending with mushrooms. Top with the remaining fontina. Put the lid on the pumpkin and wrap the whole thing, including the folded foil base, in 2 layers of heavy-duty foil.
7. Put the whole thing on the grill away from the heat, cover, and cook until the pumpkin is tender to the touch, about 1½ hours. If your grill has a temperature gauge, it should stay at around 350°F. If using charcoal or wood, you may have to replenish the coals after the first hour.
8. Remove the pumpkin and set it on a large platter; let rest for 10 minutes. Remove the foil from the top and sides of the pumpkin, tearing it around the base so that the pumpkin is still resting on foil but excess foil doesn’t show. Remove the lid and serve portions of the rice and mushrooms along with pumpkin flesh scraped from the interior walls.

Comments No Comments »

The glow on this pig is built in layers, like an Old World painting. First it is under-painted with a ruby-colored spice rub, after which transparent layers of golden smoke gild its surface. Finally, it is lacquered with honey for a crackled, crystalline skin that’s as good as the melt-in-your-mouth meat beneath. Be strict about the size of the pig (see sidebar at right). Even a small suckling pig under 20 pounds will take up at least 2 feet of grill space, which means you will need a large, barrel-shaped grill or a gas grill with at least that much space between its outside burners to cook the pig correctly. If any part of the pig hangs directly over the fire, it will scorch; wrapping that part in heavy-duty foil will help, but it will not completely solve the problem. A big enough grill is key.

TIMING
Soak wood chunks: 1 hour
Prep: 30 minutes
Grill: 3 to 4 hours.

BBQ TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT
– 12 chunks apple or hickory wood (if not cooked on a wood fire)
– Heavy-duty aluminum foil
– Long-handled tongs
– Long-handled basting brush
– Large carving board.

PROCURING A PIG
A suckling pig is not just a small pig; it is an infant. The North American Meat Processors Association has developed guidelines for butchering and sizing animals, to which all butchers subscribe. Under these guidelines animals are categorized by size, A through D. Unless you have a gargantuan grill, you want to purchase a pig in the A weight range, which is 12 to 24 pounds. These will cost much more per pound than larger pigs, but you will end up paying about the same amount for the whole pig. Most supermarket meat departments will not be able to get an item this specific, so we suggest you look for a good-quality Italian or Hispanic butcher.

THE GRILL (MINIMUM 36-INCH-WIDE FIRE BED)
Gas:
Indirect heat, low (225°F)
3- or 4-burner grill-middle burner(s) off
Clean, oiled grate
Charcoal:
Indirect heat, heavy ash
Split charcoal bed (about 3 dozen coals per side)
Large, heavy-duty drip pan set between banks of charcoal 60 to 80 replacement coals
Clean, oiled grate on high setting
Wood:
Indirect heat, heavy ash
2 beds, 8 by 8 inches and 2 inches deep
Additional wood for replacement
Clean, oiled grate set 6 to 8 inches above the fire.

INGREDIENTS (MAKES 8 SERVINGS)
For the pig:
3 heads garlic, minced
1/3 cup honey
¼ cup kosher salt
1 tablespoon ground black pepper
¼ cup hot paprika
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 tablespoon crushed dried rosemary
½ cup canola oil
1 suckling pig, dressed, about 20 pounds (see “Procuring a Pig”, right)
Oil for coating grill grate
1 apple (optional)
For the glaze:
2 cups apple cider vinegar
2 cups honey
1 cup soy sauce
½ cup ketchup.

DIRECTIONS
1. Heat the grill as directed. Soak the wood chunks in water for at least 1 hour.
2. Mix the garlic, honey, salt, black pepper, paprika, cloves, rosemary, and ½ cup oil in a bowl. Rub some of this mixture over the interior cavity of the pig.
3. Position the legs under the pig. The front legs will rest under the chin (the pig might come this way from the butcher), and the back legs should be set forward, bent from the hip, not the knee, so they extend along the belly. Tie the legs in place with several lengths of heavy-duty kitchen twine (see the illustration at right). Position the ears so that they cover the pig’s eyes, and tie twine over the ears to hold them in place. Cover the snout and tail with aluminum foil. Place a double thickness of foil around the front feet, and under the loin and the back feet in the center of the pig. Stuff a ball of foil (or a block of wood) in the pig’s mouth if you are planning to serve it with an apple in its mouth.
4. Put 3 chunks of soaked wood on each pile of charcoal, or on the grate right over the fire if using a gas grill. Brush the exposed grill grate and coat it with oil.
5. Put the pig right-side up on the grill, away from the heat. Coat with the remaining spice mixture, cover, and cook until the surface has begun to brown, about 2 hours. If your grill has a temperature gauge, it should stay between 200° and 250°F. If using charcoal or wood, you may have to replenish the coals after the first hour.
6. While the pig is cooking, mix the ingredients for the glaze in a bowl; reserve half. Snip the twine on the pig and remove. Brush the pig with the remaining glaze, being sure to get it spread evenly in all the nooks and crannies. Stoke the fire, add the remaining wood chunks, cover the grill, and cook the pig until an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of one of the thighs registers 165°F, making sure that the thermometer is not touching bone, about another hour. The temperature gauge should stay between 200° and 250°F.
7. Remove the pig to a large carving board; let rest for 10 minutes. Replace the foil ball or block of wood in its mouth with an apple, if desired. Carve by cutting the pig into leg and shoulder sections and carving the meat from the bone. Cut the ribs into 2-rib sections. Serve with the reserved glaze for dipping.

Comments No Comments »

A strip roast is the whole loin of beef, also known as sirloin strip roast, shell roast, or top loin roast. This is the piece of meat that individual strip steaks are cut from. We’re talking about 8 to 10 pounds of flavorful boneless beef. Look for this large roast sold whole in discount chain stores such as Costco. Or ask your butcher for one (it’s a good idea to order ahead of time). The beauty of the whole top loin is that it can be cut into smaller roasts or steaks. If you want a smaller roast, cut some strip steaks as thick as you like and roast the rest. The cooking time won’t vary much because the thickness of the roast remains the same. The flavor here is akin to prime rib and the meat is expensive, so serve this roast for a special occasion with a crowd. We burrow a few tunnels in the roast and stuff them with various sausages – pure indulgence. This whole roast can be cooked on your average-size kettle grill or gas  grill.

TIMING
Prep: 20 minutes (plus 5 minutes for rub and chimichurri)
Rest before grilling: 1 hour
Grill: About 1¼ hours

BBQ TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT
– Kitchen twine 
– Spray bottle filled with water 
– Heat-resistant gloves or 2 large spatulas for lifting the roast.

WORKING WITH A SMALLER GRILL
If your grill won’t accommodate the entire roast in the center of the grill completely away from the heat, push all the coals to one side  instead of banking them on either side of your charcoal grill. If you have a gas grill, heat the burners on only one side of the grill instead of heating the outside burners. This positions the meat opposite a single heated area rather than between two heated areas. Either way, there should be no heat directly beneath the roast.

DIFFERENT LINKS
Any cured or fully cooked sausages can be used in this recipe. We like long, skinny types such as chorizo because they are slender and long enough to stuff the whole length of the roast. You could replace the chorizo with lap cheong, a smoked Chinese sausage made with pork, soy sauce, and paprika. Or try another other long, skinny sausage. Any type will do. If you’re using a smaller roast, shorter sausages work well too. Try slender cervelat (smoked German sausage made with pork and beef) or tender salami such as Hungarian salami or salami Genovese. The less firm the better, since the sausages won’t soften much in the center of the roast.

THE GRILL
Gas:
Indirect heat, medium (325° to 350°F)
3- or 4-burner grill-middle burner(s) off
2-burner grill – 1 side off
Clean, oiled grate
Charcoal:
Indirect heat, medium ash
Split charcoal bed (about 2 dozen coals per side)
20 replacement coals
Heavy-duty drip pan set between banks of charcoal
Clean, oiled grate on medium setting.

INGREDIENTS (MAKES 10 TO 12 SERVINGS)
1 whole boneless beef strip roast, about 10 pounds, surface fat trimmed to ¼ to ½ inch
12 ounces long, skinny cured or cooked sausages, such as Spanish chorizo or Portuguese linguiça
½ cup Mild Chile Rub
Oil for coating grill grate
2 cups Red Pepper Chimichurri.

DIRECTIONS
1. Make 3 tunnels in the center of the roast that you can stuff. To make each hole, push a sharpening steel through the meat on one side, then repeat in the same location on the other side so that the two tunnels meet to create one long tunnel. Insert a long, thinbladed knife into the tunnel on both sides and cut slightly to enlarge the tunnel just enough to fit the sausages snugly.
2. Cut any pointed tips off the ends of the sausages. If the sausages are longer than the roast or are bent in the middle, cut the sausages in half. Stuff the sausages into each tunnel from either side so that the sausage pieces meet in the middle of each tunnel. You should have 3 tunnels completely stuffed with sausages.
3. Sprinkle the chile rub all over the roast, patting it in with your fingers. Let the meat rest at room temperature before grilling, about 1 hour.
4. Heat the grill as directed.
5. Brush the grill grate and coat it with oil. Put the roast on the grill grate directly over the heat to sear it briefly, 2 to 4 minutes per side. Douse any flare-ups with water from a spray bottle. Once it is grillmarked, move the roast to the unheated part of the grill with the fatty side up. There should be no heat directly beneath the roast. Cover the grill and cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat registers 125° to 130°F for medium-rare, about 60 to 80 minutes. For even browning, rotate the roast from end to end once during cooking. If the roast browns too much on the bottom sides, shield those sides with foil. If using charcoal, you’ll probably need to add fresh coals after about an hour. If your grill has a temperature gauge, it should stay at around 350°F.
6. Remove the roast to a large serving platter, cover loosely, and let rest for 20 minutes. Carve the roast into slices no thicker than ½ inch.
7. Serve with the chimichurri.

Comments No Comments »

Seaside clambakes are a New England tradition. Native Americans are said to have taught the Pilgrims the technique, which is an all-day undertaking. For an authentic clambake on the beach, you dig a big pit in the sand about 2 to 3 feet deep and line the pit with rocks. Then you burn plenty of wood over the rocks for 2 to 3 hours, until the rocks are smoking hot (about 400°F). After you’ve raked away the coals, layers of seaweed, potatoes, corn, small clams, mussels, and sometimes sausages or other ingredients go directly over the hot rocks. Add some more seaweed, top with a huge, sea-soaked burlap tarp and more hot rocks, and let the whole shebang steam until the food is cooked through and infused with the briny aroma of the sea. If you don’t have a beach nearby (or enough wood to burn for 3 hours), here’s the backyard method. We use a covered kettle grill as the pit and rehydrated store-bought seaweed in place of fresh seaweed. The ingredients are layered in a large roasting pan, and the pan is put directly on the coals on the bottom of the grill. You could also do this on a gas grill with medium heat under the roasting pan, but we like the charcoal kettle grill because it’s closer to the original method.

TIMING
Soak wood chips: 1 hour
Prep: 30 minutes
Grill: 1 to 1½ hours.

BBQ TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT
– Large roasting pan, such as a turkey roaster (heavy-duty if disposable)
– Heat-resistant grill mitts (preferably heatproof silicone)
– Long-handled tongs
– 40-by-15-inch piece of burlap
– 2 cups wood chunks or chips, preferably oak.

TIPS
– Look for dried kombu seaweed in an Asian grocery store or large supermarket.
– Soaking mussels in salt water helps to rid them of any lingering sand. Mix ½ cup of salt in about a gallon of water in a large bowl. Add the mussels and let soak for 1 hour. Then scrub the mussels with a stiff brush under running water and yank off the mosslike “beard”, using pliers if necessary.
– For the burlap, an old coffee sack works well. Ask for one at your local coffee shop. Some hardware stores also carry burlap.

THE GRILL
Gas: Indirect heat, medium (325° to 350°F)
3- or 4-burner grill – middle burner(s) on medium-low
Charcoal:
Indirect heat, medium ash
Split charcoal bed (about 2 dozen coals per side), single layer of coals in center
20 replacement coals.

INGREDIENTS (MAKES 10 TO 12 SERVINGS)
3 ounces dried kombu (kelp) seaweed (see Tips)
3 pounds small red-skinned or white potatoes, scrubbed
1 tablespoon crab boil seasoning, such as Old Bay, or sea salt
2 onions, peeled, leaving the root end intact, and cut lengthwise into eighths
12 ounces cured Portuguese linguiça or Spanish chorizo, sliced ½ inch thick
8 ears fresh corn, shucked and halved crosswise
3 dozen littleneck or small cherrystone clams
3 dozen mussels, scrubbed and debearded (see Tips)
1 small bunch flat-leaf parsley
6 live lobsters, 1 to 1½ pounds each
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, melted
2 lemons, cut into wedges.

DIRECTIONS
1. Heat the grill as directed. Soak the wood chunks or chips in water for 1 hour.
2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Remove from the heat and add the kombu, letting it soak until softened, about 5 minutes. Reserve the soaking liquid.
3. Put a thick layer of seaweed over the bottom of a large roasting pan such as a turkey roaster (heavy-duty if disposable), reserving some of the seaweed for the top layer. Put the potatoes in a single layer over the seaweed. Sprinkle the potatoes with a little of the crab boil seasoning, then add layers of onions, corn, sausage, clams, and mussels, in that order, sprinkling some crab boil seasoning and a few parsley sprigs over each layer. Pour about 1 cup of the seaweed soaking liquid over all of the ingredients. Arrange the remaining seaweed over the top. Soak the burlap in the remaining soaking liquid until saturated, 5 minutes. Fold the burlap to make a double thickness, then drape it over the seaweed, tucking the edges inside the roasting pan to cover the ingredients.
4. Rake a single layer of hot coals over the center of the grill, leaving the remaining hot coals banked on opposite sides. Put half of the soaked wood chunks or chips over the coals on the sides. When the wood begins to smolder, put the roasting pan over the coals in the middle of the grill, cover the grill, and cook with the vents open until the potatoes are tender and the clams and mussels have opened, 1 to 1½ hours. Test the potatoes by lifting up a corner of the cover, digging down with tongs, and poking the potatoes with a knife or fork. Add the replacement coals and the remaining wood chunks to both sides of the grill when the old ones begin to die out. If your grill has a temperature gauge, it should stay at around 350°F.
5. About 30 minutes before serving, bring 2 large pots of salted water to a boil. Add half the lobsters to each pot. Cover and cook until the shells are bright red, 8 to 12 minutes per batch. Remove and cover loosely with foil to keep warm.
6. Remove the roasting pan from the grill and transfer to a large trivet for serving. Or transfer the ingredients to a large serving platter. Discard the seaweed, parsley, and any clams or mussels that have not opened. Pour any juices from the bottom of the pan over the clambake. Sprinkle with a bit more crab boil seasoning. Cut the cooked lobsters in half lengthwise and arrange on top. Serve with the melted butter for drizzling or dipping, and lemon wedges for squeezing.

Comments No Comments »

Nothing surpasses the sight (and the smell) of prime rib encrusted with garlic and herbs emerging from the grill. Although this recipe is spectacular with any grade of beef, use it as an excuse to treat yourself to real prime rib. Only 2 percent of the beef in the United States is graded prime, and most of that never reaches the retail market, so you will have to seek it out. A trusted butcher can order it for you even if it is something he doesn’t normally carry. Ask your butcher to cut the meat from the bone along the ribs, but leave it attached at its widest end.

TIMING
Prep: 15 minutes
Grill: About 2½ hours.

BBQ TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT
– Large rimmed sheet pan
– 2 sturdy spatulas for lifting the roast.

THE GRILL
Gas:
Indirect heat, medium (325° to 350°F)
3- or 4-burner grill – middle burner(s) off
2-burner grill – 1 side off
Clean, oiled grate
Indirect heat, medium ash
Split charcoal bed (about 2 dozen coals per side)
Charcoal: 30 replacement coals
Heavy-duty drip pan set between banks of charcoal
Clean, oiled grate on medium setting.

INGREDIENTS (MAKES 14 SERVINGS)
For the beef:
7-bone prime rib roast of beef, about 7 pounds
½ cup chopped fresh herbs (rosemary, flat-leaf parsley, oregano, thyme, and/or basil)
8 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons kosher salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
For the pudding:
6 eggs, large or extra-large
2¼ cups milk
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
2 cups flour
1/3 cup drippings from the beef
2 tablespoons freshly grated horseradish or jarred horseradish, drained

DIRECTIONS
1. Heat the grill as directed.
2. If the meat was not cut from the bone when you purchased it (see the recipe introduction), do this yourself, leaving it attached at its widest end.
3. Mix the herbs, garlic, olive oil, salt, and pepper in a small bowl and rub all over the meat, including the underside where it is sitting on the bones.
4. Put the roast, bone-side down, on a large rimmed sheet pan and put it on the grill away from the heat. Cover the grill and cook for about 1 hour. Check the drippings in the pan; there should be about ½ cup. Remove the pan and keep the drippings in it. Return the beef to the grill away from the heat. Cover the grill and continue cooking until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers about 130°F for medium-rare, about 1½ more hours. If your grill has a temperature gauge, it should stay at around 350°F. If using charcoal, you may have to replenish coals after each hour.
5. Just before the beef is finished cooking, combine all of the ingredients for the Yorkshire pudding in a bowl and stir just until combined.
6. Remove the beef to a large carving board and keep warm. Return the sheet pan to the grill; cover and heat for a minute or two. Add the pudding batter, spreading it to cover the pan; cover and cook until puffed and browned at the edges, 10 to 15 minutes.
7. Slice the roast and cut the pudding into 14 pieces; serve.

Comments No Comments »