Mark Hoolihan opened a Southern Humorists' discussion
about cooking when he said:
"My wife heard of this way to barbecue a chicken by
setting it on a can of beer on the grill... This must be a
southern idea. Anyone help me out here?"
"I have heard of cooking a chicken on a beer can. Waste
of beer." replied Ben Baker, who has never wasted
anything he could eat or drink.
Of course, if you want to know something about barbecue, just
ask a group of southerners. It wasn't long until Carrie
English came up with a recipe:
"Drink 1/4 of the can of beer, and drink four more beers
while you fire up the grill. Coat the chicken with butter,
olive oil, or more beer and set it the gobbler on the 1/4
empty beer (very pessimistic when it comes to my beer). Grill
for about an hour and voila - the masterpiece is ready."
Pamela "knows-her-chicken" Klein has a
slightly different version and even listed the ingredients -
both of them.
1 nice chicken
1 can beer
"Brine chicken for about an hour in about 1/4 cup salt in
enough water to submerge. Remove chicken and pat dry, season
with pepper and fresh garlic, rub on a lot and push cloves
under the skin and into the meat. Make sure you have removed
all the bits from the inside of the chicken then insert the
OPEN can of beer into the large opening where stuffing would
go. Make sure the chicken is balanced, tie the wings next to
the body and either grill or bake until juices run clear. The
beer helps keep the meat moist and adds a nice flavor."
Phil Jones came up with a more unique method guaranteed
to be favored by college students, bachelors, and street
"Seems like a lot trouble. Personally, I'd buy a
six-pack, drink five of the beers, and then just pour the last
one over some KFC."
We scratched our heads and pondered over what to call this
recipe so it didn't sound like a northern hoax to
Madden, " who thinks beer-butt chicken is a Yankee
"Most people call this Beer Butt Chicken but I agree- we
could think of a much better name," Frank G. Van Atta
mumbled. Unfortunately, most of the perfectly good names
suggested were censored out by Net Nanny, who is a prig.
Hungry for barbeque chicken and tipsy on beer, the Southern
Humorists all rushed off to backyards to fire up their grills
and report back to the group on the results:
Ern Grover had the earliest report. "Caution. Open
the beer tab. Don't ask." He didn't bring back any
samples. We don't know why.
Carrie, with a wild look in her eye, added, ". .
.the chicken has been known to tip over. I mean, a beer can
only hold so much. A 4 pound chicken carcass can be a bit
much. And if you spill the beer, you risk the alcohol abuse
We wondered if that's why it was being called "Tipsy
Chicken" but decided it was for other reasons.
Mark Motz also had less than perfect results,
"Note to self: Open beer can and drain before grilling. I
forgot once, and invented the first orbiting roaster." We
here at Southern Humorists wish him a speedy recovery.
Pamela, possibly after sampling one of the ingredients,
said. "I saw this method described in a grilling
supplement to the Naples, FL newspaper back in May. Bill and I
tried it as soon as we got home - the hardest part was getting
a single can of beer because we drink bottled beer. "
Beth Jacks reported, "We do this a lot at my
house. Beer butt chicken is delicious and worth the effort --
which ain't much." We immediately voted to have our next
cookout at Beth's house. Don't tell her. We want it to be a
Karin Vingle regrets she could not report back in
person, but she did send us a note from her hideout, rumored
to be some place in Iraq.
"I decided to try a variant of your Beer Butt recipe on
my ex husband. It was great fun inserting the can and although
I can't say for certain whether the beer improved the flavor,
as he was already fairly well self-marinated, the meat did
seem quite especially juicy (although the high fat content of
my ex could have something to do with that)."
In spite of all the wonderful suggestions on how to grill
chicken - or maybe because of them - Mark Hoolihan
responded, "Thank you all for the advice on the chicken
and catfish. I think we'll do the catfish this weekend."