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Dec 23, 2012 01:44 PM

Rotisserie users . . . do you use your rotisserie? And which rotisserie do you have? Any helpful hints/suggestions for a novice? Thanks!

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  1. We have a rotisserie as a part of our gas grill. We love it!! Mostly use it for whole chickens. We have done a roast beef once before and it was sooo good. The rotisserie forms such a nice crust. We always put a pan underneath on the grill so we can catch some drippings for gravy. My best advice for rotisserie is to season heavily. Enjoy!

    1. I have a Ronco. I love it to death and use it for pork loins prime rib and chicken mostly. I use it every few months because it is out of sight and I forget about it. That being said I am sure there are much nicer ones out there but this one is fairly priced and meets my needs and has for ten years.

      6 Replies
      1. re: suzigirl

        Do you use a probe thermometer to determine when the meat is cooked? I was wondering if its possible to somehow use a temperature probe with an external reading device -- like this one:

        1. re: CindyJ

          That is the exact one that I use and i love it. Worth every penny. Obviously you can't use it in the rotisserie because the cord would get all tangled as it spins and if you attach the probe without the cord and reattach as you need to read make sure you keep it away from the heat source to get an accurate read. To be honest I think an instant read thermometer is more accurate in this situation. But the Polder to put in a roast for the oven and set the temp and have it tell you "beep beep I'm done" is priceless. No more overcooked dinner. However, for some crazy ass reason the Ronco tells you how many minutes per pound and you set a timer and it works. But i still check it with an instant read before I pull it so I don't have to reload the meat if it isn't ready. Pulling the hot meat is hard enough. I can't imagine reloading it if it needed more time

          1. re: suzigirl

            I have that Polder, too, as well as a Thermapen, but I can't imagine using the Polder in the rotisserie.

            Why would you have to "undo" the meat from the holder in order to test the temp with an instant-read thermometer -- or am I misunderstanding you?

            1. re: CindyJ

              I wasn't clear. I meant if you only had a regular thermometer. Also look into the meat "rubberbands" for lack of a better term. There are two kinds. Plain rubber and cloth covered. Makes easy work of trussing. You can usually find them in Asian markets. I like the cloth even though they are more costly. They slip less. If you can't find them locally you can get them on the internet.

              1. re: suzigirl

                These meat "rubberbands" are used instead of string for trussing?

                1. re: CindyJ

                  Yes. I first got introduced to them when I got my machine. They sent me a hundred I think. They are super helpful. Twine is obviously cheaper but these things are super easy to use.

      2. Hi, Cindy:

        I have two, and I like them both. I have a vintage Sunbeam tabletop electric model, and then I retrofitted my Texas Pit offset smoker/BBQ to take a 4-foot spit as well. I've used them both for a wide variety of things.

        The tabletop model is really well thought out. The element is a loop, so most of the drips collect in a pan underneath, for making unbelievably flavorful sauces. The smell in the kitchen is fantastic

        My default dish in both is a whole chicken or duck. I like to hot smoke the birds for about an hour and then finish them on the rotisserie.

        What I *really* want is the old-style iron rack in which you stack fruitwood pieces in a vertical fire, and then have a clockwork spit you put *next* to the rack, and a lechefrite pan underneath.

        I use a Taylor instant-read themometer to test doneness.

        As far as suggestions go... (a) Be patient; (b) Better to fool around with getting the meat perfectly centered/balanced than trying to use counterweights; (c) If you're doing more than 1 chicken at a time, have someone strong with good BBQ gloves to lift the spit on/off the holders and make the height adjustments in place.

        You can do SO much better than the supermarket rotisserie!


        2 Replies
        1. re: kaleokahu

          Thanks for the insights and advice, Kaleo. The rotisserie has a vertical rack, so balancing and centering isn't as critical as it would be if it were horizontal. And it's a countertop model, not large enough to hold more than one chicken or roast at a time.

          I do have a concern about heat loss when I open the door to test the temperature; that's why I was wondering if there's some type of leave-in thermometer that can work with the rotation of the meat.

          I can see how there's going to be quite a learning curve, and I'm inclined to take notes so I can remember what to do/not do in subsequent efforts.

          1. re: CindyJ

            Hi, Cindy:

            You're welcome.

            Re: heat loss... My tabletop model is not enclosed at all--it's the direct infrared from the coil that roasts like a broiler, not like an oven. I doubt you're going to have much of a heat loss issue if you stop and open the unit long enough to stab your roast with an instant read (But it does have Pavlovian salivary response effects).


        2. We have three.

          One is built in to a gas BBQ.
          One is electric as a combination toaster oven.

          And one is something very unique: A combination charcoal BBQ, which swivels up to become a vertical rotisserie.

          Since most know of the first two, I will explain the last. This is a camping or cabin/chalet BBQ with stainless legs, a cast-iron base for charcoal, a wire rack to hold the charcoal in, and a battery operated motor for the spit.

          To Roti, we swivel the base up vertically, with the wire rack also vertical, which then retains the charcoal, and prevents it from dropping down. One loads the charcoal from the top, and keeps the fire going as needed, by adding more little by little.

          The spit and motor are placed mid-way or towards the top as it is adjustable. Meat such as a tenderloin, is placed on the spit, and it cooks away horizontally, warming us in the evening.

          A good way to meet people and enjoy a little wine.

          I believe we have used it as a BBQ (swiveled down) only once or twice. We constructed a nylon reinforced rubberized bag to take everything kayaking. The charcoal still managed to get wet, but we found enough small bits of wood to still make dinner. Lamb, pork, beef, or fish all cook away while one does something else like a salad. It takes minimal care one it starts turning and cooking away.

          I have not seen these in Germany, Italy, Austria, or North America: Only here. For those interested, it was purchased a number of years ago at Globus.