If you've never tried smoked chicken, you probably want to know what's so great about it. Once you try it you will know and will want it smoked each and every time. Slow cooked, smoked chicken just melts in your mouth it is the most juicy chicken you will ever eat. Especially if you brine it first. A grilled chicken is good, but you haven't had GREAT chicken untill you've had a smoked chicken.
Fill a 3 to 4 qt. sauce pan about 2/3 full with water and turn on the burner to medium heat. Add the salt, pepper and the rosemary for the brine. Crack the pepper and cloves and crush up the thyme and sage and add to the pan. Bring this mixture up to a simmer. Let it simmer for a few minutes to disolve the salt and suggar and to get the aeromatics all blended in. In a large pan or bucket (large enough to hold the chicken(s), add the brine, chickens and enough cold warter to cover. Set the container in the fridge and let it brine for at least 4 hours. I usually let mine stay in the brine over night. After you have let the birds brine as long as you wanted them to, remove from the brine and rinse off the brine. At this point you can do one of two things. You can start putting all the spices on the bird or you can remove the backbone first. By removing the backbone you allow the chicken to lay flat on the grill and get a more even cooking. Either way this will still be the best most juicy chicken you have ever had. Adding the spices and herbs: Add some salt and pepper to the underside of the chicken and then turn over with the brest side up. With your fingers seperate the skin from the breast and thighs, being careful not to rip the skin. Get as much of the spices under the skin as possible rubbing in onto the meat. Divide the butter up and put it under the skin. Then add the rosemary sprigs under. You can add a little oil to the outside and sprinkle with salt pepper and paprika if you wish. I normally do. Before putting the bird on the smoker you need to get it ready. Get your coals going and add what ever type of hardwood you like. I don't think there is any wrong wood. I have used hickory, oak, apple, pecan, maple and misquite. All the chickens have come out delicious. You will need to control your fire so it matains a temperature between 200? and 225? throughout the cooking process. It should take about 4 hours to cook a four pound chicken to about 170? in the thickest part of the breast. Throughout the cooking process I like to spray apple juice on the skin to keep it moist.
You will need a smoker to have smoked chicken. A BBQ grill will not work. You need a smoker so you can saturate you chicken with smoke. Not a searing grill. You will need to maintain a fairly constant temperature and smoke throughout the process. A remote thermometer is a good investment if you bbq or smoke meat a lot. I have a "Redi Check" also a "Taylor" remote. It's the best way to know your bird is safe to eat. A good smoked chicken will be very tender, have pink meat and the juices will run clear.
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|Serving Size: 1 Serving (338g)|
|Recipe Makes: 8 Servings|
|Calories from Fat: 356 (54%)|
|Amt Per Serving||% DV|
|Total Fat 39.5g||53 %|
|Saturated Fat 12.3g||62 %|
|Monounsaturated Fat 15.5g|
|Polyunsanturated Fat 8.2g|
|Cholesterol 180.1mg||55 %|
|Sodium 1080.5mg||37 %|
|Potassium 999.2mg||26 %|
|Total Carbohydrate 33g||10 %|
|Dietary Fiber 11g||44 %|
|Sugars, other 22g|
|Protein 47.1g||67 %|
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Calories per serving: 654
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