My father likes new and shiny things. When things no longer shine (or one comes along with shinier buttons), he wants new ‘shinies’. This is a good thing and a bad thing for me. It makes the man a royal pain to shop for. He wants it – he owns it. However, it means that next summer I get a ‘new’ grill and that just recently we got a ‘new’ smoker. A year old and a little used, yeah, that’s still new to me.
Today I smoked my first chicken (my first ever anything smoked) and already my head is filled with ideas of what I can do with this new baby. I figured start small (and cheap) in case it was a total bust so a 6 lb chicken it was. I named it Todd, which is kind of something my family has always done. Apparently naming your poultry is not normal according to Handsome. Who’da guessed?
Beginners Smoked Chicken
- 1 6-7 lb chicken (thawed)
- 1/3 cups salt
- 1/4 cups sugar
- 2 quarts water
- Spices of your liking (for the first try we used a pre-made chicken rub)
Introduce yourself to your poultry. If your going to get this handsy with something you should at least know its name and offer it a stiff drink first.
Soak wood chips for at least an hour before placing them in the smoker. I used hickory chips this time because they are easy to find at local hardware stores recently.
In a large pot mix the salt, sugar and water. Bring to a boil, remove from heat and cool completely (brine can be made ahead of time). Gently place your chicken in, cover, return to refrigerator and let soak in the brine for 4 hours.
Remove chicken from brine and pat dry. Evenly coat the chicken with rub, making sure to get the inner cavity, bottom and top, legs and wings, as well as, under the skin.
Place your new friend in the smoker at 275° for 2 1/2 to 3 hours (follow your manufacturers directions for soaking wood chips and other safety precautions).
Remove from the smoker and let rest for 20 minutes before serving.
I served Todd with baked beans and an anticlimactic pasta salad.
Perhaps I should stick to poultry because I made another attempt at Alton Brown’s angel food cake today and it fell flat again. I am not sure what I am doing wrong. It seems that the top (which would be the bottom once flipped) is cooking properly but the bottom is not. It comes out thick and dense – not light and fluffy at all. My thoughts of where I am going wrong are: I am a novice at creating peaks from egg whites, so maybe I am not doing that right? Handsome’s hand mixer has one speed – furious. There is no general mixing with it so maybe it’s too aggressive with the egg whites? And the stove did require a new element this year and does run hotter then the temperature settings, so maybe that’s it. Either way. No freakin clue what’s wrong. Grr.