Join Me in the Kitchen: Bundt Pan Chicken

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Well friends, how are you handling your social distancing? Are you finding things to do around your house to keep yourself, as well as your family occupied? These are surely unprecedented times for all of us. I find myself counting my blessings a little more often as I hear of the traumas being endured in not so faraway places. I am just as happy to be spending my days in my little corner of the world where I am surrounded (with-in 6ft that is) by my loved ones. I find myself being increasingly thankful for my health, as well as the health of my family and friends!

During these days of staying home, I have been tackling tasks that have been put off for much longer than I should have let them be. I have cleaned closets and drawers, organized and purged. As one might expect, I have done a lot of cooking, too. With our favorite restaurants closed for service, we are eating at home a lot more than usual. I always enjoy having time to cook and bake at home, and have really enjoyed spending more time at our own dinner table with my husband and son. Now that the weather may be truly spring-like, I can turn my attention to cooking outdoors. The yardwork tends to fall to my husband, but I don’t mind tackling the grill. Over the last several months, we didn’t uncover the grill as often as I would like to have, so I am more than ready for the sizzle and smell of a thick, juicy steak, cooked to its perfectly rare bliss and enjoy our social distancing on the deck!

Among the many things we are having to re-think during this time of “non-get-togethers” is how to celebrate the upcoming Easter holiday, as well as other spring time occasions like birthdays and anniversaries. I have seen and heard of many families using technology to stay in touch by video chats and conference calls, and of course a good old phone call is always a joy, the comfort of a familiar voice can sooth frayed nerves. Gathering the extended family around a common dinner table will not be happening for most of us this Easter season. I have heard a few people saying they don’t plan to celebrate anything until this is over, but I disagree! Now is a time when we need to stick to comforting rituals, no matter how they may need to be altered! Find a way to spend time together, either by technology or while practicing social distancing. We need to keep in touch with our families and friends to boost morale and offer support!

Dear friends, we are all in this crazy situation together! Please remember that taking it one day at a time will seem less scary than looking at a whole month (or more). Why not think of this not as a problem to deal with, but a potential to embrace. I offer you this suggestion…start each day with a prayer and a cup of coffee, plan your day, and make the most of all we DO have, not what we are missing! Stay healthy, my friends!

Bundt Pan Chicken
(my twist on beer can chicken!)

1 large whole chicken rinsed and patted dry

1 T salt
1 t pepper
1 T paprika
1 t oregano
1 t onion powder
1 t garlic powder
½ t cayenne

4 carrots, peeled and cut in chunks
4 potatoes, quartered
1 onion, quartered
1- 12 oz can of your favorite beer

Mix all seasonings together, set 1 T aside, then with remaining seasoning blend, generously rub all over chicken (sprinkling in cavities as well).

Coat Bundt pan with non-stick spray and insert large opening of chicken over the center tube. Spread veggies around chicken and sprinkle with reserved 1 T of seasoning rub. Carefully pour beer over veggies into bottom of the pan.

Bake at 400* for about 1 -1 ½ hours (until chicken reaches internal temp of 165*) and veggies are tender.

To read more of Vicki McGraw’s commentaries on good cooking, fine recipes and perfect party treats, visit www.jamestowngazette.com and click on Join Me in the Kitchen’s own page. The Jamestown Gazette is proud to present our county’s most creative and original writers for your enjoyment and enlightenment.