EatWell Christmas: Santa’s Sizzling BBQ

In Australia, owning a barbecue is almost mandatory. But do you really know how to use it? On the next page, you’ll learn how to create a sizzling, saucy chicken recipe from a true American Creole barbecue master, Honey Child.

Get ready to learn the art of barbecuing like you’ve never seen before with her simple tips and tricks. Plus, you’ll also discover a delicious Burnt Basque Cheesecake fit for a Christmas barbecue feast.

Start your Christmas off with a sizzling start! All Traeger Grill are available from traeger.com/au/eu


Honey Child is pure, unfiltered joy. A true Creole — a person of mixed racial, religious and regional cultures — Honey was born in Hawaii, has lived all over the world and now, luckily for us, calls Tasmania home. She was born into the food world with a family of cattle ranchers, farmers, heritage hunters, butchers, classically trained pastry chefs and more. Destined to shine, Honey is the queen of cooking over fire. On page 161, she teaches Emma Dean how to barbecue like a pro — the American way. She’s charismatic, generous, kind and effortlessly funny. When she’s not showcasing her food traditions in Tasmania, she’s curating bespoke menus or teaching the Stephanie Alexander program to her primary school “kidlets” in Hobart. With a personality that fills the room, Honey is a blessing to this Earth, and it is an honour to have her feature in EatWell.

Creole Smokin’ Saucy Chicken Roll

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“Sitting down with beloveds to feast is a time of true fellowship. I find everything from the the thoughtfully set table to the relaxed and light conversation as delicious as the food served. It is the greatest human tradition to break bread with loved ones. It is also restoring and invigorating on a primal level,” shares American Creole, chef and all-round delight Honey Child.

Serves: 8

BBQ Chicken or Pork Dry Brine & Rub
Makes: 1½ cups


  • ½ cup dark brown sugar
  • 5 tbsp freshly cracked black pepper
  • 3 tbsp coarse sea salt
  • 2 tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tbsp granulated garlic
  • 2 tsp toasted & ground cumin
  • 2 tsp toasted & ground fennel seeds
  • 2 tsp granulated onion
  • 2 tsp mustard powder
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 4 free-range fresh chicken marylands
  • Honey Child’s Creole-style Pikliz, to serve (recipe below)
  • Bertolli Originale Extra Virgin Olive Oil, for basting or barbecue sauce
  • 8 Bakers Delight Herbed Long Rolls or White Sandwich Rolls
  • Paul Newman’s Own Ranch Dressing, to serve


  1. To make the dry brine and rub, combine all ingredients in
  2. a small bowl, using a fork to break up any clumps.
  3. Use immediately or store in an airtight container for up to 30 days. Rub can be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  4. To dry-brine the chicken (or pork), pat the outside of the chicken dry with paper towel. Slide your fingers between the skin and flesh of the chicken. Rub 2 tbsp mix under skin and into the leg meat of each maryland. Reserve the rest for finishing. Place chicken on a plate and refrigerate, uncovered, for 24 hours.
  5. When ready to cook, set the Traeger temperature to 180°C and preheat with the lid closed for 15 mins. If using a gas grill, begin preheating at least 15 mins before grilling.
  6. Remove the chicken from the fridge 30 mins before barbequing. Pat off any excess moisture with paper towel. Season skin generously with salt and a good sprinkle of the dry rub. 
  7. Place the seasoned chicken. skin-side up, directly on the Traeger grill grates. Close the lid and cook until the skin is crispy, about 20 mins. After 20 mins, open the lid and flip chicken. Close the lid and continue cooking about 10 mins more or when an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the chicken (without hitting the bone) registers a temperature of 80°C.
  8. If using a gas oven, rotate the chicken every 15 mins and continue to cook until a thermometer registers a temperature
  9. of 80°C. It will take about 45 minutes.
  10. When the chicken has rested and is just cool enough to handle, strip and slice the skin and meat. Sprinkle with extra rub mix.
  11. Cut the Bakers Delight White Long Rolls lengthways. Smear
  12. a generous amount of Paul Newman’s Own Ranch Dressing on each roll. Load the rolls with Honey Child’s Creole-style Pikliz (recipe on page 163) and top with chicken and a little more rub.

Burnt Basque Cherry Choc Cheesecake

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If you were to eat only one cheesecake, let it be the Burnt Basque Cheesecake. “Burnt” due to its iconic, almost-scorched dark surface, this cheesecake will have you begging for more. Now, how about an Air Fryer Burnt Basque Cheesecake? Just add choc and cherries and you’ve got yourself a winning combo fit for any Christmas barbecue feast.

Serves: 10


  • 200g panela sugar
  • 500g cream cheese, softened
  • 300mL thickened cream
  • 5 Sunny Queen eggs
  • 3 tbsp plain flour
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Pinch salt
  • LINDOR Balls, to serve
  • CherryHill cherries, to serve
  • CherryHill Cherry Syrup, to serve


  1. Preheat Nutribullet XXL 7L Digital Air Fryer at 180°C.  
  2. Grease a 20cm springform baking tin and line it with baking paper. Make sure the paper is just enough to line the tin and also have a slight overhang.
  3. Place sugar in the small or medium cup of the Nutribullet Smart Touch Blender Combo and blend until finely ground. Shake the cup a few times to mix up the sugar.
  4. In the large pitcher of the Nutribullet Smart Touch Blender Combo, place cream cheese, cream, Sunny Queen eggs, flour, vanilla, salt and blended sugar. Process on high for 1 min until smooth and well combined. Tap the jug on the bench to release any large air bubbles.
  5. Pour the batter into the prepared baking tin.
  6. Place the cake tin carefully in the drawer of the Nutribullet XXL 7L Digital Air Fryer and set to 180°C for 30-35 mins.
  7. Bake for 30-35 mins or until the top is well burnished and there is only a slight wobble in the centre. Remove from the oven. Cool in the tin for 1 hr. Allow to set completely by chilling in the fridge for 4-5 hrs before slicing and serving topped with LINDOR Balls and CherryHill
  8. Cherry Syrup.

Emma’s top tips

for making a perfect Burnt Basque Cheesecake:

Make sure the cream cheese and Sunny Queen eggs are at room temperature. This will ensure quick and even blending in the Nutribullet Smart Touch Blender Combo.

Do not overmix the cheesecake batter. The ideal blending time is 30-60 secs.
Always line the tin with baking paper to facilitate easy removal and unmoulding of the cheesecake after baking.

The cake will be jiggly around the middle when you finish baking. This is okay and is what you want for that silky custard interior.

Remove cake from oven and allow to cool to room temperature. The cake may sink slightly. This is okay.

Chill the cake in the fridge for 4-5 hours or overnight. This will allow the cheesecake to set completely. Do not be tempted to cut into the cheesecake while it is still warm. (Although it tastes amazing, the centre will be too gooey!)

Creole-Style Pikliz

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“So many folks are surprised at how healthy and versatile my foodways are. I love showing the unfiltered truths of the wholesome seasonality and economic savviness of the food,” Honey Child says to Emma Dean with a smile.

Makes: 1.5L jar


  • 400g white cabbage, finely sliced
  • 1 carrot, julienned or grated 
  • 1 large shallot, thinly sliced (½ cup)
  • 2 jalapeno chilli peppers, stemmed & quartered
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • 8 whole garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 3 cups apple-cider vinegar
  • Juice & zest 1 lime


  1. Pack cabbage, carrot, shallot, chilli, thyme, garlic and salt into a sterilised 1.5L resealable jar. 
  2. Add vinegar and lime, seal jar, and shake until
  3. ingredients are distributed and salt is dissolved. 
  4. Add more vinegar if needed to just cover vegetables. 
  5. Store in the fridge, shaking gently twice daily for at least 3 days before serving.
  6. The pikliz will keep for 1 week in the fridge.
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