Our Food “Staycation” – Celebrating July 4th With Lemon Curry Rotisseire Chicken

Hello family, friends and fellow bloggers!!

After the heat and humidity extravaganza last week, as well as the unexpected storms it produced, yesterday can only be described as a perfect day here in Michigan!  The gorgeous day made trying to get back on track and running errands a little more pleasurable.

Our third day of “Staycation” was the 4th of July, normally we would have had people over for a bbq.  I don’t know if it was because the 4th fell in the middle of week (which didn’t matter for us Walt was off anyway) or if it was because we had made dinner plans for three of the other four nights of our “Staycation” we decided to make it low-key, just the two of us this year.

Our day started out with Eric (lil E) which I wrote about yesterday but once Nikki came to pick Lil E up at noon it was just the two of us.  We ran to the market to pick up the ribs for Thursday and to Kroger for everything else I needed to make the cole slaw, beans and cornbread.

Once we were home we pretty much just chilled out.  I played some games on-line, Walt played on the PS3.  We watched a movie “The Conspirator.”  It’s funny how it worked out that a movie about the assassination of President Abe Lincoln and the trial of the lone woman named as a conspirator in his assassination would be the movie that was next up in our Blockbuster rotation.

Walt and I both loved this movie and if you like well written, well-directed, historical movies, you have to see this one.  It was fact based, no-nonsense, no sex, just the facts as written in history.  Nothing was added to make it glamorous or to take the focus away from the facts.  It was thought-provoking and even though we already knew how things turn out in the end, Walt and I were on two different sides of the outcome.   It’s funny how we each related to and reacted to the facts presented.

We enjoyed our quiet day even the storms that hit at the exact moment Walt walked through the door with the chicken he had just taken off the grill.  It was odd, like the rain had held up long enough for him to finish up outside then all of a sudden the sky opened up and flooded the street.  It would have been nice if the rain would have cooled things off a little bit but it didn’t and the humidity became unbearable.

It was a great day in spite of the rain and we had a delicious dinner.  Walt has several rotisseire chicken recipes he wants to try so we thought our quiet 4th of July would be the perfect day to pick one and go for it.  I leave the selecting up to Walt.  He picks out the recipe, I decide the sides.

I love chicken, love cooking boneless, skin-less, chicken breasts.  What I don’t generally like are whole chickens.  Why you ask?  Because they are dirty.  Yes, even in this day and age, even with processing, there is “gunk” in there. I will not eat a whole chicken that has not been soaked overnight in a huge pot filled with water, onions, garlic and a ton of salt.

My dad was raised on a farm and was not and is not, generally, a big fan of chicken until he tasted the chicken that the lady who catered my wedding in 1974 made.   The caterer told my mom that her secret was soaking the chicken over-night in huge pots of water with cut up onions, garlic and a ton of salt.  She told mom that this draws out the blood and other stuff.  Some people would call this method “brining.”

The first time my mom made chicken using this method we could not believe how dirty the water was after 24 hours, it was disgusting to say the least.  We have used this method every time we make a whole chicken or chicken pieces with the skin still left on, well over 35 years!

At first Walt was like “Really, is this necessary?”  Until he saw the water the next morning after that he was sold.  Now it’s become part of his planning process…. You will hear him say, “Ok sweetie, we need to soak the chicken over-night.”  Ahhh, it’s nice he sees it my way.

So this is what it looks like going into the refrigerator.  I am not going to post the after, it’s not pretty.  Try it sometime when you are using chicken pieces with the skin on or a whole chicken.  You will be surprised.

Soaking Chicken

All you need is:

A large pot

  • Two big onions
  • A whole garlic, divided, peeled and chopped
  • About a cup of course salt (depending on how big your pot is and how much water you use – I used a stock pot).
  • A whole chicken or chicken pieces with skins on (giblets removed)
  • Refrigerate over night or at least 12 hours.
  • The next day, take the chicken out of the pot, rinse chicken completely
  • Discard what’s left in the pot

That’s all you have to do!

Now you’re ready to create a great dinner!!  We served this with Rice A Roni Parmesan Romano Cheese, it was perfect together.

The recipe is taken from “Weber’s Charcoal Grilling – The Art Of Cooking With Live Fire – Page 171.


  • Prep time:  10 minutes
  • Marinating time: 8-12 hours
  • Grilling time:  1 to 1.5 hours
  • Serves 2 to 4

Rotisserie Chicken

Marinade Ingredients

Grated zest and juice from 1 lemon

2 tsp   Extra virgin olive oil

1 tsp       Curry powder

1 tsp       Dijon Mustard

1 tsp       Dried thyme

1 tsp       Granulated garlic

3/4 tsp  Kosher salt

1/2 tsp  Ground cayenne pepper

1             Whole chicken -3.5 to 4 lbs.

Marinade Directions:

  • In a medium bowl mix the marinade ingredients until you creat a paste
  • Remove wing tips and any other excess fat from the chicken (make sure giblets were removed)
  • Rinse chicken inside and out under cold water
  • Pat dry with paper towels – place in a large bowl
  • Spread the paste all over the outside of the chicken
  • Cover the bowl and refrigerate for 8 to 12 hours

Prepare The Grill

  •  Prepare a three-zone split fire for medium heat using mesquite lump charcoal.
  • Place a large disposable drip pan between the piles of charcoal and fill it about halfway with warm water

Prepare the Chicken

  • Truss the chicken with kitchen twine
  • Following the grill’s instructions, secure the chicken in the middle of a rotisserie, put the rotisserie in place and turn it on
  • Cook the chicken over indirect medium heat with the lid closed as much as possible until the internal temperature reaches 180 degrees F in the thickest part of the thigh (not touching te bone) about 1 to 1.5 hours 
  • To maintain the heat you may have to add 5-6 unlit charcoal briquettes to each pile of charcoal every 30-45 minutes

Rotisserie Chicken
Cook 1 to 1.5 hours

  • When the chicken is fully cooked, turn off the rotisserie
  • Using insulated mitts , remove the rotisserie from the grill
  • Tilt the chicken upright over the disosable drip pan so that the liquid that has accumulated in the chicken’s cavity pours into te pan
  • Slide the chicken from the rotisserie onto a cuting board.
  • Let rest for about 10 minutes before carving into pieces
  • Serve warm

Rotisserie Chicken


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