Friday, May 25, 2018

This Goth Can Cook: Cajun Beer Butt Chikun

Greetings my dear Gothlings!

[WARNING!!! Vegetarians and Vegans look away NOW!!!]

I do enjoy to cook, but my absolute favorite method of cooking is grilling on the barbecue! There is something primal about cooking something over an open flame...something instinctual that hearkens back to basic survival skills. But I  also like to step it up from basically throwing slabs of raw meat onto a sizzling grill...I like to challenge myself to Gourmet BBQ!

With the unofficial start to Summer looming this Memorial Day weekend, I wanted to introduce to you all to one of my all-time favorite chicken recipes that is fun and easy to make, especially for a summertime moonlit backyard Zombie BBQ party (*hint*hint). This super easy recipe requires only 3, count 'em, THREE basic ingredients!!! They are:

  • One whole chicken
  • One can of beer
  • Cajun spice blend
That's it!!! These three simple ingredients is going to result in the most tender and juiciest barbecued chicken you have ever tasted in your entire undead life! Here is how it all comes attention, class...

First, the BEER. You will need one standard sized can of ordinary beer (per bird if you are making more than just one). Go with something relatively simple on your first attempt of this recipe -- Budweiser, PBR, Heineken, etc. -- you can then experiment with other more flavorful beers once you've mastered the technique.

Next, the BIRD. Take your whole chicken, remove and discard the giblet package from inside the bird, rinse the whole carcass and pat it dry with some paper towels. With a knife you will need to cut off those two nubs of fat that are found at the edge of the cavity hole at the lower end of the bird. 

Grab your CAJUN SPICE BLEND by the handfuls (you can wear latex gloves for this process to help with some of the messiness) and completely rub the chicken's skin with it. Generously cover every square inch with the spice rub. Then take another handful and coat the inside of the bird's inner body cavity. It might seem a bit gross...but not as bad as how you are going to soon "violate" this headless poultry corpse!!!

Now, go back to your can of beer, crack it open, remove the tab from the can, and drink half of its contents! That's what I said...drink half of the beer...a very important step!!! Then take a sturdy and sharp knife or one of those old-timey can openers to carefully create a second smaller hole on top of the can, directly above the "drink hole." Next, take about a tablespoon of remaining Cajun spices and dump it into the beer can. Set aside.

Now it's time to prep your grill. For this recipe you will need to use the an "indirect grilling" method...this means that, whether you are using a gas or charcoal grill, you will be positioning your bird(s) NOT above a direct flame. For example, if you have a gas grill that has 2 or 3 heat zones, use medium to high heat and turn off one of those flame source and place your chicken there...likewise, if you have a charcoal grill, shuffle all of your hot coals to one side and place your chicken over the opposite side, and place twelve fresh coals after one hour of cooking. Clear? If not, click here for an expanded explanation by The Grill Master himself, Steven Raichlen

Ok...this is where the magic happens!!! Take your Cajun spice rubbed whole chicken in one hand and take your can of beer in the other hand...then...IMPALE THE CAN OF BEER STRAIGHT UP THE CHICKEN'S ASSHOLE CAVITY!!! 

If you haven't been too traumatized or haven't been put on some sort of a neighborhood watch list by now, it's time to carefully place your violated chicken on the grill balancing in a tripod formation, using the beer can and the two drumsticks as the base. Also, be sure that the neck hole is open and unobstructed. If done right, it should look as though your chicken is squatting on a beer can toilet (lovely!). Here is a picture of a two chickens I made last summer:

Now, hopefully your barbecue grill has a cover large/tall enough to fit the upright bird...if it does, place on the lid and let it steadily cook for about 1 hour and 15 minutes to 1 hour and a half. But beware!!! You should have your trusty, handy-dandy instant-read meat thermometer to periodically check the internal temperature, poking it at the thickest part of the thigh but without touching the bone, or in the breast meat area. The ideal temperature you are aiming for is between 160° F and 180° F. Also, if you notice that the skin is becoming overly cooked, you can simply cover the outside of the bird with aluminum foil. You want the skin to have a wonderfully golden brown color. comes the tricky part! You are going to need some very heat resistant oven mitts, gloves, or matts, and maybe a pair of tongs, if need be. You are then going to remove the whole bird & beer can off of the grill and place it in a casserole dish or something similar to reduce any messiness. Once in place, carefully tilt the bird and gingerly twist and remove the beer can from its butt. BE VERY CAREFUL...the can is super hot and half filled with boiling liquid!!! Set the can aside while trying to preserve as much of the remaining beer as possible. And now you are ready to carve your chicken and serve.

So, if this entire process is done accurately, you will find that the beer inside of the can boiled within the bird's corpse cavity and escaped out of its neck hole, thus somewhat boiling the chicken from the inside and grilling the chicken on the outside, resulting in super moist and tender meat that is filled with Cajun flavor and ready to fall off the bone. To add more flavor, you can liberally douse the carved chicken with the leftover beer & spice soup from the can before serving!

This recipe is truly extraordinary and a big crowd pleaser. I do hope that you get to try it and see just how simple and fun it can be! Let me know of your results with this recipes in the comments below, and enjoy your CAJUN BEER BUTT CHIKUN!!!

See you in the Dark!

Sir William Welles

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

This Goth Can Cook: The McRib!!!

Greetings my dear Gothlings!

[WARNING!!! Vegetarians and Vegans look away NOW!!!]

Growing up as a fat kid in New York City during the 1980's, I was naturally exposed to, and fell in love with, the nationwide craze that was McDonald's special McRib sandwich when it first came out in 1981 and lasted trough to 1985, and then made a comeback in 1994 due to a commercial tie-in with the live action Flintstones movie, and for a third time in 2005 to 2007 for the "McRib farewell tour" promotion! The very simple reason why the McRib sandwich never became a true McDonald's menu fixture- but made several comebacks - was due to two main factors: less than expected sales and the rise and fall of pork costs in the U.S. market! 

You see, as popular as the McRib was at its debut, the sales weren't high enough to warrant its continuation when ports prices began to they canned it! But years later, when pork prices dramatically dipped, McDonald's executives found it profitable enough to stage a "limited time" comeback for the McRib fans (such as my fat-ass adolescent and young-adult self) to rush to the nearest 'Mickey-Dees' and purchase this barbecued sponge and meat concoction!

(check out this video for a detailed McRib history in about 5 minutes)

I have to point out here that I use the word "concoction" because the McRib was far more 'factory creation' than 'fast food.' [Side note: as a preface to all of this, you should really check out the movie The Founder starring Michael Keaton on Netflix that explains the McDonald's origin story!] 

Let me breakdown the McRib for you...and try not to get too queasy. First you start with the slab of shredded pork meat...this was a pork meat blend that was ingeniously shaped to resemble a section of baby-back ribs, or some mutant hybrid thereof, thanks to the use of moulds. This (questionable) meat is then drenched in a glossy, hyper-salty, sweet & tangy barbecue sauce! Now, the sauced meat is then sprinkled with chopped or sliced onions and ridged sandwich/hamburger pickle chips and placed onto a soft and spongey, yet elongated, bread roll...and that was it!!! So simple...but so complex at the same time! It was sooooo unhealthy for you...but tasted sooooo damn good!!!

Here...let the guys from Good Mythical Morning explain it a bit further in the following video:

So with all of that in mind, and since I have sworn off any and all McDonald's food items for many many years now, last summer I was determined to deconstruct the McRib sandwich and replicate my own in a somewhat healthier version!!! I did do quite a lot of research, experimenting, and trial & error...but I prevailed...and SUCCEEDED!!! And now, I will share my homemade McRib recipe with you!

The Recipe:

Ok...This recipe should make about 3 or 4 'faux' McRib sandwiches. First, the simple ingredients:

  • 1 package of LLOYD'S Baby-Back Ribs, or another brand of pre-cooked, pre-sauced, and packaged BBQ pork ribs. Not the healthiest or natural alternative, but this is actually an important factor. 
  • Additional barbecue sauce (optional or for dipping)
  • 1 large white onion, sliced or coarsely chopped
  • Ridged sandwich/hamburger pickle chips
  • Long and soft bread / sandwich rolls...or hamburger buns in a pinch

Additional items (I shit you not):

  • A pair of tongs
  • A pair of pliers
  • Aluminum foil
  • An instant-read meat thermometer 
First, you will need to prep the ribs. Peel open the semi-prepared ribs from its packaging and transfer it to a long (over 2x the length of the rib slab) piece of aluminum foil while trying to preserve as much of the BBQ sauce as you can. Loosely wrap up the whole thing like a giant burrito but with the ends sealed up tight. 

Next, follow the cooking instructions on the original packaging for either conventional oven or barbecue grilling. Use the instant-read thermometer to make sure that it is perfectly cooked through by poking in between the bones...never touch a thermometer to bones, which carry much higher heat. Then set the rib package off to the side and out of the heat for another few minutes as to "boil" or further soften the rib meat some more. 

While the ribs were cooking you should have been chopping the onion, fishing out the pickles from the jar, and setting up the bread...what's wrong with you?!?!?😜

Now comes the intricate and laborious part! After you use the instant-read thermometer to see if you've reached the optimal temperature indicated on the package instructions, get your tongs (not thongs) to carefully pry open the very hot layers of aluminum fail encasing your tender and juicy pork ribs. Beware! There will be a bunch of hot juices and sauce bubbling...act gingerly!

Carefully transfer the slab of ribs onto a large dish, platter, cutting board, or anything that will carry the entire length of the slab that allows you enough free space to dissect this delicious beast!

Here's the fun part! Take your tongs again in your less dominant hand and your pair of (washed) pliers in you dominant hand...and now, time for surgery! MWUAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!

Use the tongs to steady the rib meat while using the pliers to grab hold onto the end of a fully exposed and hopefully loosened rib bone. Give a slight twist of the pliers to release the bone from the meat and then gently "pull out" the bone from the entire slab and discard. Repeat for each small rib bone. If done right, you will be left with a perfect slab of boneless ribs!!!!

Now...onto the the final preparation of the sandwiches...

Take your slab of boneless ribs and cut it into segments, in the same direction that the bones were placed, into three or four parts that will evenly fit your bread. Gently place your pickle chips and sprinkle the onions onto the meat as little or as much to your liking, and then simply place it in between the two halves of your sandwich roll.

Lastly, bring this entire thing to your mouth-hole, close your eyes, take a strong bite, and be amazed by how much this homemade McRib sandwich tastes just like (or if not better) than the corporate version!!!

See you in the Dark!

Sir William Welles

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Monday, May 14, 2018

This Goth Can Cook: Mum's Day No Carb Crab Cakes!!!

Greetings my dear Gothlings!

As some of you may or may not know about me at the moment is that I am shedding an amazing amount of pounds, once again, due to my strong commitment to a no carb/low carb diet...kind of a mix between Atikins & South Beach Diet with some Mediterranean diet thrown into the mix. My only weaknesses & cheats are Pizza & Wine...but other than that, I like to challenge myself with innovative no/low carb recipes that I find on the InterWebs to experiment with (heads up: chickpea flour pizza crust and sugar-free pizza sauce coming soon!!!).

With that established, I was scratching my head as to figure out what to cook at me Mum's house for Mum's Day this past weekend. I soon remembered that one of me mum's favorite dishes of all time is Crab Cakes! Perfect!!! Except for the fact that crab cakes are always always typically made with carb (and gluten) packed breadcrumbs!!!

So I scoured the web and went through a bunch of low carb recipe websites and settled on the one provided by which offers pork rinds as an alternative to breadcrumbs as a caking agent. Well this peaked my interest and I decided to go with this...and the results were AMAZING!!! Here is my experience with this recipe and how I made it...
(I must warn you here that I slightly veered away from the original recipe, namely because the can of crab meat was 16oz instead of the 8oz so I doubled everything! I will explain as I go along...)

First, eight (8) simple and healthy ingredients:


  • Vegetable oil (NEVER EVER EVAAAAARRR cook or fry with olive oil. EVER!!!)
  • 2 medium zucchini - grated or finely chopped (use the big holes on a cheese grater)
  • 6 green onions/scallions - finely chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Tablespoons of Dijon (French!) mustard
  • 1 cup (or a tad more) of crushed pork rinds
  • 1 teaspoon of lemon-pepper seasoning
  • 16oz of crab meat

Ok...let me start you off with a few helpful hints...especially for the crab meat itself. Crab Meat is friggin' expensive!!! I found the Chicken of the Sea brand at the supermarket and depending on what type of crab style you choose from it could run you from $19.99 to $27.95 per can!!! I chose the middle one called "Special" (why is it special? I dunno.). Stay away from "Claw" (cheap) and "Lump" (super pricey). The "Special" style was the perfect consistency for this recipe! Next, you may have noticed my note about cooking with olive oil? Yeah...well...that, again! I will explain this in my upcoming and highly anticipated new Vlog series, The Cranky Restauranteur. goes! Start off by grating the two medium zucchinis into a bowl and then finely chop the white and firm green parts of the scallions, and dump into the same bowl. Get a large skillet and put in 2 tablespoons of your oil and sauté your zucchini/scallion mix on medium-high heat for about 5 minutes or until rather tender. Remove this from the skillet and put it on a plate off to the side to cool down.

While you are waiting for that to cool down, grab a large ziplock bag and dump in about four big handfuls of pork rings into it, seal it up, and start pounding it on the table to let out some 
frustrations and repressed anger until you get a fine breadcrumbs consistency. Measure out about a cup of the pulverized pork rinds...a bit more is better than a bit less.

Now for your mixture...In a large bowl crack open the two eggs and dump in the egg innards. Take a whisk and beat them into submission. Then add your mustard, lemon/pepper seasoning, pork rinds, and crab meat. Mix well.

Find your cooled plate of zucchini & scallions and take a few layers of paper towels to press down on it to absorb any excess moisture...this might take a few tries. Then take notice of the funky green art left on your paper towels. Next, add the greens to your mixture in the large bowl and mix very thoroughly!

Now you have a bowl of this stinky green and white mush. Great! You are done with the prep work! Now to start cookin'!!!

Take your skillet from before and add a bunch of vegetable oil until you get at least a healthy half of an inch of oil pooled in the skillet. Set your flame to high, but make sure not to overheat -- if you have any remaining zucchini/scallion bits remaining in there and you start to hear them sizzling, then you are good to go! 

Wash your dirty paws and go to your mixture and start making the crabby patties (Spongebob Squarepants not included) by grabbing a handful of the stuff and continuously cupping it like you would do when making a hamburger patty. Be sure that it feels firm enough to hold together...not too wet/not too dry...not too thick/not too thin. The recipe that I modified created 6 patties that were just about an inch and a half thick and the size of a large cookie...but I think that you can properly squeeze out about eight of these if portioned right. 

Next, when your oil is nice and hot, you are going to grab your (plastic/silicon - not metal) spatula and carefully place a few of the patties in the oil and let them fry for about 5 minutes until golden brown on the underside. After 5 minutes, very carefully flip them over and let brown for another 5 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare a large plate to the side and place two or three layers of paper towels on it...this will be your de-greasing station. 

After the ten minute cooking time is done, carefully remove your crab cakes and place them on the paper towels and let them sit while you go and repeat the next batch in the skillet. 

Once all of your crab cakes are cooked to perfection, simply transfer to plates and accompany them with either Tartar Sauce, Cocktail Sauce, lemon juice, or the blood and tears of your fallen enemies! ENJOY!!!

See you in the Dark!

Sir William Welles