Right! Time to get out the big black cast-iron pot, and cook a camp-fire roast chicken dinner – no oven required.
A chicken pot-roast is delicious and easy to make, and even cooks quite quickly. The flavours are amazing – this may be the most tender, flavourful chicken you’ve ever had on a braai, and it comes with a rich, fragrant gravy.
To serve with the roast chicken, try some potato halves soaked in olive oil and braaied until crisp. With a big summer salad and a glass of chilled white wine, you’ll have a feast!
To pot-roast a chicken, you’ll need your faithful Dutch oven or potjie pot, and a wood-fire with flames, especially at first.
To cook the potatoes, you’ll need hot coals, so put them on when your chicken is nearly done. It will take about an hour to roast a small chicken, slightly longer for a larger bird, and about 20 minutes grill time for the potatoes.
Beer Pot Roast Chicken
Oil for frying
1 small chicken
2 rashers of streaky bacon, chopped
2 medium onions, peeled and halved
3 cloves of garlic
500 mls of boiling water, mixed with –
1 heaped Tbsp good quality chicken stock powder (I like Ina Paarman’s stock)
- Wash and trim the chicken, pat dry with kitchen tissue
- Heat a little oil in the pot over the flames, add the chicken and brown thoroughly. Take time to do this, as this will add to flavour and appearance
- Once the chicken is done to your satisfaction, remove it from the pot and set aside for a few minutes
- Add the bacon, garlic and onions to the pot, arranging the onions cut side down in the centre, and letting the bacon and garlic fry briefly – don’t let the garlic burn, or it will be bitter
- Return the chicken to the pot, placing it breast side down on top of the onions, and add the beer and stock
- Cover with the lid, and leave to cook – it should simmer quite briskly
- Remove the chicken from the pot, and carve
- Serve with the gravy poured over the meat, which will be tender and succulent
Braaied Potato Halves
These potatoes are even good cold the next day.
4 potato (or one per person)
Freshly ground salt and pepper
Dried mixed herbs
- Wash the potatoes and boil in their jackets until just tender – you should just be able to get a sharp knife through the centre – be careful not to overcook, or it will be difficult to braai them (if you cook them too much, I’d suggest proceeding with potato salad instead).
- Drain the water and leave to cool
- Split each potato in half lengthwise
- Score each half with a sharp knife to allow all that gorgeous olive oil to soak in (or prick thoroughly with a fork), taking care not to go through the skins
- Arrange on a plate, pour over some olive oil, rubbing it into the skins
- On the cut side, grind over the seasonings, sprinkle with herbs, then turn the potatoes cut side down to soak in the oil
- About 20 to 30 minutes before the chicken is done, place the potatoes on the grid over hot coals, starting with skin side down, and then turning them regularly
- Serve with the chicken and gravy and a big green salad – oh, and don’t forget the wine!
Please do check out my new page on camp-fire bread making. Happy camping!!