Grilled Chicken, Molasses Barbecue Sauce; Italian stories

I have not been making pretty food lately

I have been making good food, however….. Appearances can be deceiving.

In this case I’ll blame it on the cook (mon mari).

He does warn to be careful once you start basting as the barbecue sauce can burn easily.

He did not burn ours. Even though it looks quite black it’s not burnt – that’s just the molasses sauce.

We use legs and thighs because that’s what we can get here. Mon mari is balking lately at having to cut up whole chickens himself….

Grilled Chicken, Molasses Barbecue Sauce

Total time: 45 minutes

  • 3 chicken thighs
  • 3 chicken legs
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp lemon pepper salt
  • Molasses Barbecue Sauce:
  • 3 tbs molasses
  • 3 tbs red wine vinegar
  • 1 tbs Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbs Dijon-style mustard
  • 1 tbs orange juice
  • 1 tsp chili powder

Grilled Chicken


  • Rub chicken pieces with oil. Sprinkle with Lemon Pepper
  • Cook chicken on barbecue grill for 25  – 30 minutes, turning once or twice.
  • Barbecue Sauce:
  • Combine all ingredients for sauce and heat. Stir well to combine.
  • Start basting after 20 minutes and baste 2 – 3 times. 
  • Serve with remaining barbecue sauce on the side.

Print Recipe

We had the strangest thing happen when we were in Italy last month….

Well, two strange things, actually.

The first was that we couldn’t find a place to have lunch.

In Italy…. On a Saturday….

We left Bologna in the morning and drove to Modena. I wanted to go to the Saturday market to buy Balsamic vinegar, which I did. As it was still too early for lunch we left Modena and decided to take the back roads to Verona. We were confident that we could find a nice little restaurant to have lunch some where along the way.

We were wrong.

None of the little towns and villages we went through had a restaurant or a restaurant that was open.

Finally, as it was getting close to 2:00 and we were worried that even places that had been open would be closing (restaurants don’t stay open here all day long) we stopped at this bar / cafe.

You can’t really tell from the photo but the front tables, under the awning, were filled with men of all ages. And they were standing around, leaning on the wall, perching on the fence….

No women or children, just men.

We said ‘buongiorno’ and wound our way to the door.

Yes, we could have something to eat. There was a choice of a ham and cheese sandwich….

Freshly made, of course, on fresh bread.

While we were enjoying our sandwiches the guys all started wandering in and through a door in the back.

Turns out they were all there for the Saturday afternoon poker game.

The second strange thing happened an hour later.

We stopped for gas.

Mon mari got out of the car, as usual, to pump the gas.

I stayed in the car, as usual, reading a magazine.

Suddenly, out of the corner of my eye, I saw a big stick coming right at my face!

Our windshield was being washed by a service station attendant.

I have not been able to say any part of that sentence since I was child.

I looked over my shoulder and mon mari was not pumping the gas. That was also handled by the service station attendant.

I excitedly waited for him to offer to check the oil – and then thought to look around in case I was in the Twilight Zone.

Neither happened.

We left with a full tank, a clean windshield and a receipt for gas that was perfectly in-line with all the other gas receipts.

And, of course, a story to tell….

Last update on August 9, 2017

7 thoughts on “Grilled Chicken, Molasses Barbecue Sauce; Italian stories”

  1. When Sears was still selling gas about a million years ago, I did just that, full service gas. I liked it well enough in the summer but the winter was brutal that year and I don’t do well in cold weather….

    I don’t even know if there are any full service gas stations anymore!

    • I used to go to one in the U.S. in the really cold weather, but I’m sure that is long gone now. Most here in France are totally self-service – including paying.

      • Aha. That’s exactly how we are. More often than not, as I take a picture of the plates ready for he table, because there is a delay on our digital camera, the view that appears is a blank counter because my husband has already whisked the plates away.

        Very strange about the gas station. Maybe they were doing a study for their sociology class to see how long it took before there was a massive line up of cars.

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