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Saturday, January 14, 2012

A Winter Grill

Taking advantage of a rare three day stretch of clear skies, I pulled the grill out from the garage last night for a little mid-winter outdoor cook-off.

Normally, when it comes to anything that once had a bone in it, I like to keep that bone in it through the cooking process. There's something about a flat chicken leg, though, cooked evenly and slowly over smoldering coals until tastefully charred and juicy throughout.

So I de-boned a couple legs and coated them with a marinade of thick Greek yogurt whipped together with a paste of dried red chiles and olive oil. A healthy sprinkling of chopped herbs - thyme, rosemary, marjoram, and mint - with abundant coarsely cracked pepper and sea salt and onto the grill, a bed of red glowing in the cold backyard.

I pulled the legs when, well, when they were done: a good firm push back when pressed with a finger, deeply charred in spots, and redolent of summer in the Mediterranean. Still sizzling, a fat squeeze of lemon. A spinach salad, a glass of Grenache, and a brief taste of summer in the dead of winter.

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