My Pit Barrel Cooker is a great addition to my BBQ set up.

I didn’t care that it was only 35 degrees yesterday, I was going to grill.  It helped that I bought packages of chicken wings for $1.70 each at Jewel in the discount meat bin.  And it also helped that I had this amazing cooker.  Yes, that’s what is called – a Pit Barrel Cooker.   It does smoke as well, but so far I’ve only used charcoal, lit with a chimney, to cook my meat.  Tony and I once tried to smoke with hickory chips, and I don’t know if we used too much, or the heat was too high, but all we tasted was the smoke and it was just too much.

I start the coals on my chimney on my Weber grill.  I place unlit coals in the bottom of the cooker (about 40 briquettes) and then top the lit coals from the chimney on top of the other coals.  There is a vent on the bottom of the smoker where I can control the amount of oxygen the coals get.

While I wish it had a temperature gauge, it doesn’t really matter because I cook my meat to temperature.  Since I had breasts, thighs and wings going at the same time, because the breasts were the biggest piece of meat, I probed the chicken breasts and once it hit 165 I pulled everything off the grill.

I used three different rubs on the chicken, but truly couldn’t tell in the end which was which, but they were all flavorful.

Jacob’s grandpa came over for Sunday dinner (his Dad didn’t come at the last minute) but we’ll have plenty of chicken for leftovers this week.

I also made macaroni and cheese because Hannah doesn’t eat chicken on the bone (or much chicken at all for that matter!) (wait, unless it’s a chicken finger!), oven roasted red potatoes and garlic green beans.  It would have been nice to hang outside while grilling, but I guess Mother Nature prefers us midwesterners to wear down coats and a scarf while grilling this close to April.

Jacob’s birthday is tomorrow – the last of the March birthdays for our family!  We went to Maggiano’s on Saturday night.  So much good food and wine!

This is the dish I got – it was called Filet Mignon Risotto.  This isn’t how I expected the dish to look – I assumed I would get a small filet with the risotto on the side, but this was delicious.  Shiitake mushrooms were in the risotto and it was so flavorful.

Maggiano’s is not on the Weight Watchers app, so I had to improvise – so I didn’t actually eat at Carl’s Jr. πŸ˜›

I went to Weight Watchers on Saturday.  I hadn’t been in two weeks, and I was up 2.6 pounds, so basically I am up just one pound in 2018.

I got many many DM’s on Instagram asking my why I am still on Weight Watchers since its obviously not working for me – why waste the money?  Well, here is the deal – I am not working the program 100%.  And I know that.  I only have success when I follow the plan, treat the weekends like the weekdays.  My meals are actually on point, it’s the extra licks, tastes, drinks, snacks, etc. that have to go.  All those bad habits have come back with a vengeance, and I just need to get my focus back.

I love my leader too – she’s funny and upbeat.  There is always a full house at the 8:30 meeting – and Saturday’s are so busy at this location they had to add another meeting.

Without being “on” Weight Watchers I could have easily been up 20 pounds, so I consider a one pound gain basically maintaining and I am fine with that.  I have seen so many Weight Watchers go “off plan” on Instagram, showing gains for 13+ pounds for the month, so I know I’ll get my rear in gear soon.  I still have my bronchitis cough, it is in week 4, so I am hoping that goes away soon.  I feel fine, but every couple hours I have a coughing fit.  Ick.

The flowers Hannah and I bought at Trader Joe’s are still going strong!  I think it was my friend M.J. who said that these are called star gazers and that they do last weeks.  We only spent $3.99 a bunch!

I did a lot of resting this weekend too in between cooking projects.  Turns out the pups don’t mind that at all.  They are the best snuggle buddies.

Happy Monday my friends – make it a great day!

p.s. – check out this OLD post on simple BBQ chicken.