I will try to ignore the rain currently lashing at the window, and transport myself back to yesterday teatime: the sun is shining, England are finally getting Bangladesh out, and I am off to my first barbecue proper of the summer. Not only am I wearing my new DKNY maxi-dress (a thing of great beauty - tall girls everywhere are rejoicing at the return of the maxi) but on our arrival we hear the words that my husband has been longing to hear ever since we saw some chef or other (Jamie?) demonstrating every boy's dream on television: "Come on through; we're just trying out that thing where you cook a whole chicken on the barbecue over a can of beer."
And yes: there she is, sitting proudly astride a can of John Smith's, and wearing a jaunty tin-foil hat as the barbecue works its magic. My understanding of the whole procedure is sketchy - clearly I couldn't get anywhere near the barbecue for the throng of admiring boys clustered around - but I did glean the following:
- you need a can of beer without a widget (my friend assures me that the staff at Sainsbury's look at you as if you're mad when you explain this)
- you can also stuff the cavity with rosemary if you happen to have loads of the stuff growing in the garden
- it takes about an hour over the barbecue and you don't need the lid on
- it would be a good idea to wrap the beer can in tin-foil to prevent the print from the tin coming off onto the chicken (we only know this with hindsight)
- it's delicious :)
So frankly, I fear a new standard has been set; what can I cook to better this when it's my turn to host the next barbecue? Suggestions please; although from the look of the weather I've got at least a week or so to come up with something....