Apr 13, 2010

Smoking Chicken - Real Barbecue

I have tried this "recipe" or style of smoking a whole chicken several times and now it's the only way I do them.  I may change up the marinade or brine a little from one time to another, but the basics that are taught in this article are solid.  That is the reason I put this article here.  If you want more top notch advice on how to improve your BBQ skills, definitely check out his site HERE, or click on the title of this post.


This article written By Derrick Riches, About.com Guide

Smoking one 4 pound chicken will take about 4 hours. Before you put the chicken in the smoker give it a good wash and trim off any lose fat and skin. Smoke at about 220 degrees F until the temperature at the center of the chicken breast reaches about 185 degrees F. Watch this temperature closely because you don't want to get to far above 185 degrees F.

If you do nothing with the chicken at this point but put it in the smoker you'll get a marvelous bird. However there are several things you can do to add additional flavor to this chicken. The low and slow method of barbecue produces a vastly superior chicken to grilling. Smoked chicken is easy whether you use a large offset smoker or a charcoal grill. This is a great recipe to start with if you are just learning about barbecue.

My favorite barbecue mop recipe is a good stout. I usually get a really big bottle of stout; use about 1/4 for the chicken and the rest for me. Pour some beer in a bowl; add some garlic and onion, maybe some sage, thyme and bay leaves, or cayenne, chili powder and paprika. Of course there are lots of great smoked chicken recipes out there.

For poultry a good barbecue rub usually has sage, thyme and bay leaves. These flavors go along way with chicken. You want to work the spice rub all over the chicken. Get it into every nook and cranny, including under the skin where possible. Try to harmonize your flavors by using the same combination in your rub or mop.

So how do you know when the smoked chicken is done? Use a thermometer. It is the best way to know that your bird is safe to eat. Chicken is cooked at 165 degrees F but when smoking you want to over cook it. Look for a temperature around 185 degrees F. Test the temperature in the thickest part of the chicken breast. A good smoked chicken will be very tender, have a late summer tan, pink meat and the juices will run clear. Make sure your bird has all these elements.

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