It’s early June and I love cooking at this time of the year, because I can do so much of it outdoors.
The barbecue is by my small garden in the backyard so I can cook and pull a few weeds, trim some plants and enjoy being outside. Multi tasking, huh?
Cooking over a campfire is also fun, plus you can easily get a little smoke flavour with the dish.
Summertime is great for herb dishes. I have eight different herbs growing in my small garden and I can just go out and pick some thyme, basil, cilantro, parsley, sage, rosemary, oregano or chives.
Herbs and spices are the heart and soul of cooking according to many cooks — they give food inspiration, colour and character.
Vary the herbs and spices and you will give a dish some individuality and make it your own.
All of the herbs I have in my garden are excellent for salads, soups and, of course, there is nothing like some herbs to dress up a dish just before serving. The flowers from chives make a great addition to any salad.
This week I wanted a barbecued chicken. How was I going to cook it?
I thought about it for a while but procrastinated long enough so I took some butter and mixed it with a variety of herbs, then coated the chicken on both sides with the mixture.
Barbecued Chicken with Herb Butter
• One three pound chicken cut in half down the middle
• One-half cup of butter
• Four cloves of garlic minced very fine.
• Tablespoon of fresh parsley
• Teaspoon of crushed Rosemary
• Teaspoon of crushed thyme.
Mix all ingredients in the butter to form a paste.
Cut the chicken in half and liberally use ground pepper and seasoned sea salt to cover both sides of the chicken that has been patted dry.
Rub the buttered herb mixture over both side of the bird and put it on a hot four hundred degree barbecue.
Turn over after four or five minutes and cook other side for about the same time, and then turn down to 300 degrees until done — about another 20 to 25 minutes. You can keep a little butter-herb mixture to baste while cooking.
If you put the herb butter together in the morning and stick it in the fridge to use when you cook supper the flavours will have a nice chance to meld and get happy together.
Try some herbs in your cooking when using the barbecue
Enjoy the summer and the outdoors in the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast.
Bye for now and Goood Cooking.
Ken Wilson is a freelance columnist with the Tribune/Weekend Advisor.