[spatchcocked jack daniels chicken]

I made this up based on a meatball BBQ sauce I had and our love of Jack Daniels - and a spatchcocked chicken recipe I read once... we LOVE it - enjoy.
Heat 1/2 cup Jack Daniels in a medium saucepan on medium-high heat.  Let simmer until reduced by half.
Remove from heat and add the following to the warm saucepan:
1/2 cup Jack Daniels (yes, another 1/2 cup)
1 1/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup ketchup
1 Tbsp dry mustard
2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2 Tbsp Red Wine Vinegar
1/2 cup freshly diced white onion

Mix well and bring to a simmer, lower heat and continue to simmer for 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Cut the backbone from a 3 1/2 pound whole chicken.  Flip the bird over so the breasts are up and press down to flatten the chicken and break the breast bone.  
Place chicken in a roasting pan and lightly season with salt, black pepper and garlic powder on both sides.  With a basting brush, brush both sides of the chicken with the BBQ sauce.  Place the chicken breast side up and place the roasting pan in the oven and cook the chicken for about 1 hour, or until the chicken reads 175 degrees with an instant read thermometer.  When it reaches 175, remove from the oven and cover with foil for 10-15 minutes.  Cut into segments, (breasts with wings, drumstick with thigh) and serve with BBQ sauce.

[master recipe for american sandwich bread]

based on the recipe of the same name from The Best Recipe by The Editors of Cooks Illustrated
3 ½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus extra for work surface
2 teaspoons salt
1 cup warm milk (110 degrees)
1/3 cup warm water (110 degrees)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
3 tablespoons honey
1 package (about 2 ¼ teaspoons) rapid-rise yeast
PAM® Baking
vegetable oil for coating bowl

Adjust oven rack to low position and heat oven to 200 degrees. 
Once the oven temperature reaches 200 degrees, maintain heat for 10 minutes and then turn off oven heat.

Mix flour and salt in bowl of standing mixer fitted with dough hook.  Mix milk, water, butter, honey and yeast in 1-quart Pyrex liquid measuring cup.  Turn machine to low and slowly add liquid.  When dough comes together, increase speed to medium and mix until dough is smooth and satiny, stopping machine two or three times to scrape dough from hook, if necessary, about 10 minutes.  Turn dough onto lightly floured work surface; knead to form a smooth, round ball, about 15 seconds.

Place dough in very lightly oiled bowl, rubbing dough around bowl to lightly coat.  Cover with plastic wrap, place in warm oven until dough doubles in size, 40 to 50 minutes.
Gently press dough into rectangle 1 inch thick and no longer than 9 inches.  With the long side facing you, roll dough firmly into cylinder, pressing with your fingers to make sure dough sticks to itself.  Turn dough seam side up and pinch it closed.  Place dough in PAM® Baking- greased 9x5x3-inch loaf pan and press it gently so it touches all four sides of pan.

Cover with plastic wrap; set aside in warm spot until dough almost doubles in size, 20 to 30 minutes.  Heat oven to 350 degrees and place an empty loaf pan on bottom rack.  Bring 2-3 cups of water to boil on stovetop.

Remove plastic wrap from filled loaf pan and place pan in oven.  Immediately, pour heated water into empty loaf pan, close oven door.  Bake until instant-read thermometer inserted at angle from short end just above pan rim into center of loaf reads 195 degrees, about 40 to 50 minutes.  Remove bread almost immediately from pan, transfer to a wire rack, and cool to room temp.

[brandied-bacony chicken]

1 chicken, 3-3 1/2 pounds
2 strips bacon
1/4 cup brandy

Clean the chicken and set in a roasting pan - breast side up.  Heat the oven to 425.  In a small skillet, cook the bacon over medium heat until it's crisp and the pan is full of fat, about 4 minutes. Take the pan off the heat, place the strips of bacon straight into the cavity of the chicken.  Pour the brandy into the still-hot pan (off the heat), and let it bubble for a minute.  Pour the pan of brandy over the chicken.  Roast the chicken for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until juices run clear between the leg and body.  Let sit for 10 minutes before carving.

[warm potato salad]

based on Nigella Lawson's recipe of the same name
8-10 small red potatoes, washed and cut into 1 inch pieces
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1/2 Tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove,  minced
1 Tbsp sherry
1 tsp red wine vinegar
1/2 Tbsp dijon mustard

In a sauce pot bring 3 inches of water to a boil.  Add a little salt and the potatoes.  Boil the potatoes for 12 minutes, or until done.  Turn off the heat.  Drain the potatoes in a strainer and leave them in the strainer.  Return the pot to the warm stovetop.  Add the olive oil and the garlic clove to the warm pot and stir until fragrant.  Add the red wine vinegar, sherry and mustard.  Stir until combined.  Add the potatoes and green onions to the mustard mixture and stir to coat.  Season with salt and pepper as desired.  Place in serving dish, (or leave in pan), and let sit at room temperature up to 1 hour.  If you want, you can also chill the salad, but serve at room temperature.

[lemon-dill chicken]

So easy, it's stupid... but tasty.
1/4 cup salted butter, or smart balance
2 large boneless chicken breasts, cut in half
1/2 cup sherry
1/2 tsp dried dill
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp salt (omit if using cooking sherry)

Melt butter in a 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat.  Cook chicken in butter about 6 minutes, turning once, until light brown.  

Mix sherry, dill, lemon juice and salt; pour over chicken and bring to a boil, reduce heat.  Cover and simmer about 10 minutes.  Remove chicken from skillet; keep warm by covering with foil.  

Heat wine mixture to boiling.  Boil about 3 minutes or until reduced by about half; pour over chicken. 

[caramelized vegetables]

This recipe is so easy and so tasty, I was kicking myself that I'd never used my balsamic vinegar this way.  I know it's not that hard, and the veggies aren't really caramelized, but they look and taste like they are and we love it.  
2 pounds small red potatoes, cut into 1-inch pieces (depending on how big the potatoes are, I cut them into quarters so I have little 1 inch wedges)
1/2 tsp salt
1 pound asparagus, cut into 2-inch pieces
1/3 cup salted butter or Smart Balance (I always see how much butter this truly is when I'm cutting it, so I tend to use a Tbsp or so shy of 1/3 cup)
1 large onion, chopped (white, yellow or red depending on what you have or like), (about 1 cup)
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup packed brown sugar

Heat 2 inches of water to boiling in a 3-quart saucepan.  Add potatoes and 1/2 tsp salt.  Heat to boiling; reduce heat to medium.  Cover and cook about 12 minutes, or until tender, drain and set aside.

Heat 1-inch water to boiling in the saucepan that held the potatoes.  Add asparagus.  Heat to boiling; reduce heat to medium.  Cover and cook about 5 minutes or until crisp-tender; drain and set aside.  

Melt butter in the same saucepan over medium-high heat.  Cook onion in butter about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and opaque.  Stir in vinegar and brown sugar.  Add the potato and asparagus to the onion mixture and toss to coat everything.  Season with pepper and serve immediately, or pour contents into large Pyrex pan and keep warm (about 200 degrees) until ready to serve.  (I like to make this first and keep it warm so it sits together and the potatoes soak up even more of the liquid).  

This dish could easily serve 6 people, or 2 very hungry people with a small main dish of fish or chicken.

[beer in the rear chicken]

I was always hesitant about making this since I knew our Weber wouldn't be able to hold a chicken, but then on a very cold day I thought "screw it - I'll make it in the oven."  The result is the tastiest and most cost efficient meal I've ever had the pleasure of making.  (And I mean pleasure - this is so damn easy).  This is only slightly adjusted from Paula Deen's recipe of the same name - I am fully convinced this woman can do no wrong in the taste department.
1 chicken (3 1/2 pounds)
Lawry's seasoned salt
Paula's House Seasoning (see recipe below)
One 12-oz can Pabst (not glass - must be can)
1 tall sprig rosemary

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Wash and drain the chicken, pat dry with paper towels.  Coat the chicken inside and out with seasoned salt and house seasoning.  (It's nearly impossible to over-do this - just season it all so it's covered and rub it in).  
sit on it
Open the can of beer (it's better if it's cold, it won't foam up as much when you put in the rosemary).  Pour off 1/4 cup of beer and discard into your mouth or the kitchen sink.  Insert the rosemary into the can, (it's fine it it's poking out if it's tall).  Place the beer can upright into a roasting pan or Pyrex pan with a tall rim (my pan is 10"x13" with about a 2" rim).  You might need an assistant for this step: While keeping the can upright, sit the chicken on top with the can entering his cavity and keeping him happily upright. 

Carefully place the pan with the chicken (with the beer up his rear) into the oven and cook for an hour and 45 minutes, or until the juices run clear when poked with a fork.  When you think it's done, let it rest with foil tented on top for about 15 minutes.  Carefully remove the chicken from the can of beer and cut up and serve.  (Discard the beer and rosemary).  

Serves 2-4, depending on how hungry you are.  (We never have leftovers... remember - it's only a very small chicken).  

Note: If you find the chicken is not quite done, but you're already well past being able to stick him back on top of the beer, just place the cut up chicken back into the hot oven and cook until done. 
one more image of this - just because it's kinda funny

Paula's House Seasoning:
Keep this in a shaker with your seasonings - you should have a bit leftover after seasoning the chicken.
2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp black pepper
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