A Tale of Two Chickens

28 Nov

I was so very Little House on the Prairie yesterday. Spent the day smoking whole chickens, baking cornbread, tending the herd  children.

Let me start by saying, since acquiring a smoker, all I can think about is which things I would like to eat smoked. I think I might have a(nother) problem.

Also, the looks I got after exclaiming in Trader Joe’s, during a lull in the noise-level, “If it can be smoked, I’m gonna try to smoke it,” makes me think I need to think before I speak. However, it may have landed me a new friend or two. They will be disappointed, I think, when they find out I was talking about a carcass. Oh, well. Such is life.

Anyway, I had yet to smoke a chicken, so why not?

I found this recipe from Extraordinary BBQ recipe and followed it almost exactly.

Me, Monday night: “Wait, is brining overnight necessary? That’s a long time to wait for my delicious, delicious chicken.” SO I experimented: 2 chickens, exactly the same, prepped exactly the same way, except I only brined 1 of them.

*SPOILER ALERT: Brine the chicken. It’s immeasurably better: juicier, more flavorful, fall-off-the-bone amazing. I’ll have to do something else with the blander, drier chicken. Taco night again? Maybe.*

Note: That’s my garage fridge. I’m not, in fact, an alcoholic.

The Brine:

1 gallon water

1 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup iodized salt

Dissolve, add chicken, cover, and soak overnight.

The Stuffing:

2 yellow onions

4-6 cloves garlic

2 apples

Olive oil

Salt & Pepper

Chop, season, mix, stuff into chickens.

The Birds:

Rub chicken with olive oil

Season liberally with salt, pepper, and smoked paprika

Smoke at 250 for 3-5 hours (depending on bird size) until internal temp reaches 170.

Okay, it’s not EXACTLY like Little House on the Prairie. Close enough!

The smoking gives it that pink color. I wouldn’t poison myself (or you).

I have no words. So good. SO GOOD.

And only takes, what, like a day and a half?

It’s worth it.

Or you could just come over and join me for a beer while constantly checking the smoker temp + waiting the 5 hours for our feast.

You saw my garage fridge. Let’s get on it.

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