Fantasy Fowl


March 1, 2011 by paiday

Tall-tales, legends, and myths have one thing in common: the mingling sensation of hope and disbelief the hearer experiences. Nana’s grilled chicken resides in the annals of Big Foot, Loch Ness, and yes, even the Lizard Man.

Like it’s predecessors, the chicken has never been seen, or tasted, but the many fortunate souls to cross its path swear by it. The chicken brings to mind many questions. If it is so delicious, why have I never been offered this rare culinary delicacy? How could the relatively common ingredients of vinegar, lemon juice, paprika, and onion combine in a marinade of such magnitude to eclipse all others?

Well, the opportunity to put these questions to rest appeared this past Friday night with an invitation to a cookout at my sisters’s (Marianne’s) and find out. The recipe had been passed and the fowl was marinating.

As Saturday night grew near, I took advantage of the beautiful early spring day to cut some baby lettuces from my garden. I then mixed up a white balsamic vinaigrette. Tip: Purchase a carafe with the dried dressing mix on the dressing aisle. These carafes have engraved marks showing the water: vinegar: oil ratio. You can use any oil or vinegar you choose and add a tablespoon of dried seasoning for a quick and easy dressing. I choose a white pear balsamic, light sesame oil, and big green egg garlic and pepper seasoning.

A collection of ingredients for my salad dressing

Baby lettuces from my garden with a fresh dressing

At Marianne and Kevin’s, the chicken was on the Big Green Egg when we arrived and I was initially surprised by how red the chicken actually was. Kevin described it best by saying that he thought it had been covered in tabasco. He cooked the chicken for about an hour and a half over indirect heat between 275-300. Near the end we added some zucchini to the grill to round out our dinner.

Zucchini lightly grilled makes a quick side dish.

Kevin bastes the chicken with marinade during cooking.

The result? The chicken’s skin was surprisingly crispy and the meat fell off the bone. The chicken was tender, juicy, and mild. I would certainly make it again with perhaps the substitution of smoky paprika in the place of the normal run-of-the-mill variety. Overall, the chicken was actually a delicious use of some grilling time and I think that I will add it to my Big Green Egg repertoire. The recipe follows below so you can try it for yourself. (Don’t tell Nana though. She’s funny about her recipes.) Feel free to post reviews. I would love to know what you think.

Don't let the red color fool you, this chicken was surprisingly mild.

Chicken, zucchini, salad, and potato salad make quite a spread for Saturday grilling.

Nana’s Grilled Chicken


1/2 cup oil

1/4 cup white vinegar

1/4 cup lemon juice

1/4 cup water

1/8 cup grated onion

1 tbsp. paprika

2 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. pepper


Mix all ingredients for marinade in gallon size ziplock. Add 6-8 pieces of chicken and marinate for 24 hours.

Grill on indirect heat at 275-300 for approximately 1.5 hours.



One thought on “Fantasy Fowl

  1. Brooke says:

    Looks delicious! Thanks for posting the recipe… I will give it a try this weekend and let you know how it turns out. Anything from Nana must be extra special 🙂

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