Important Things to know about a Spit Roaster

by Nora Seabolt

A number of people use the barbecue for quick and easy cooking and although the spit roaster is a bit more work to start, the meat cooks practically by itself once it is started. The rotisserie is perfect for many types of meat, including ribs, whole birds, and huge beef roasts. Essentially, the food bastes itself while the rotisserie turns the meat, forcing the juices back in. The easy to cut tender slices of meat are very tasty.

Marinating and seasoning can add extra flavor while the meat is turning on the bbq spit roaster. Of course, there is always the option of soaking the meat in a marinade prior to putting it on the spit. There is an easier route and that involves making use of the drip pan set below to collect drips and avoid flare-ups. Any liquid you put into the pan will steam into the meat, adding flavor and moisture. Mix a cup of water and tablespoon of honey and add it to the pan. Use a dry rub for seasoning before cooking. The traditional flavoring of pepper and salt is a suitable addition before the meat is served.

You can quickly tell what size of drip pan you need by matching it to the meat. A selection of disposable aluminum pans lets you choose one that fits. Instead of splattering juices being cast off to coat the sides of the barbecue, they will land in the drip pan. You can make a delicious sauce from the juices that drip from the meat. Check the pan now and then to see if more liquid is needed, since the released steam keeps the meat moist.

It can be a challenge to get a large piece of meat onto the spit. Once you have located the lengthwise center of the meat it is possible to determine balancing problems that need addressed. Staying true to the route the skewer is to follow, firmly push it through the center lengthwise. Hold the skewer and rotate the meat by hand to check for even spacing. Adding a small hole on each side of the meat so the spit rod goes through more easily will help with balance.

The forks hold the meat firmly in place so drips will land in the drip pan, so align and fasten the fork nearest the handle first. Firm up the thumbscrews on the rotisserie forks with small pliers. The motion loosens the screws if they are not fastened properly. Keep the spit rod as close to the center of the meat to be cooked as possible. Move the other fork up and in until it is secure. Tighten the thumbscrews on that side so the meat is held firmly in place. Balance is one of the most important parts of spit roasting because it allows the meat to turn properly without putting undue strain on the motor. If the meat is unbalanced, reposition it.

If you are uncertain of how it should turn out, visit the stores that have spit roast for sale. Remove the cooking grills to avoid interference with cooking and move the lava rock aside for the drip pan to rest. Let the meat sear for fifteen minutes, if desired, before moving the banked coals away. It is tempting to lift the cover and peek, but resist opening it. Check for doneness with a meat thermometer to get the results you want.

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