Lashings of glossy, sticky, sweet apple barbecue sauce sets this smoked chicken apart.
Chef’s Note: This recipe will need to be started the day before serving. You will need a barbecue with a lid or a smoker for this recipe.
Total: 24 hours
Ingredients – brine
3 tablespoons cooking salt
3 tablespoons garlic salt (I skipped this and used 5 fresh garlic cloves)
Ingredients – chicken, rub and sauce
1 (1.4 kilogram) chicken, spatchcocked (I left mine whole and cooked it on a vertical stand)
1 bag natural charcoal
2 tablespoons paprika
1 tablespoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon kosher salt (this is too much, 1 tsp. is plenty as the chicken has been brined. Salt-sensitive might leave it out of the rub completely)
250 ml (1 cup) apple juice (substitute apple sauce otherwise WAY too runny and unuseful)
250 ml (1 cup) barbecue sauce
100 grams unsalted butter, melted (skipped completely, this is insane to add IMO)
1 kilogram (2.2 lbs.) wood chips or chunks (apple wood, ironbark or hickory), soaked in water for 1 hour
In a large saucepan, combine the cooking salt and garlic salt with 4 liters of water and bring to the boil. Dissolve the salts, then remove from heat and cool completely before adding the chicken to the brine. Refrigerate overnight.
The next day, remove the chicken from the brine, pat dry and refrigerate, uncovered, for 2 to 3 hours to dry the skin. (In my opinion this is unnecessary especially for a BBQ’d bird as the sauce wipes out all crispiness)
Add some charcoal to the barbecue and light with firelighters – the coals will need to be red hot before adding any wood chips.
Meanwhile, combine the paprika, pepper, and kosher salt in a small bowl. Remove the chicken from the refrigerator and generously season with the paprika mix. Set aside for 30 minutes while the charcoal comes up to
Whisk the apple juice, barbecue sauce, and melted butter in a bowl and set aside.
Add a handful of wood chips to the hot coals. Place the chicken in the barbecue or smoker and cover with the lid. Keep adding charcoal and wood chips as needed – but don’t open the lid unnecessarily – to maintain the smoke and a temperature of about 155°C (311° Fahrenheit).
Brush the apple barbecue sauce on the chicken after 1 hour, and again after 1-1/2 hours. By this stage, the chicken should be almost ready – if you have a probe thermometer, you’re looking for an internal temperature of 75°C (165° Fahrenheit).
Once cooked, remove the chicken from the barbecue and brush one last time.
Wrap the chicken in foil and rest for 30 minutes before serving.
2 tbsp. harissa (I found mine at Trader Joe’s. Add more if you want it hotter)
1 cup sliced mushrooms
Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees. I have a large ceramic coated metal roasting pan that’s shallow. On the stovetop I add the oil oil and then brown the chicken on a low flame because I want to get them nicely cooked before I put them in the oven. After you’ve flipped and browned the 2nd side of the chicken start adding the vegetables, you might boost the flame a little. I go onions, then bell peppers, then garlic, the raisins, then balsamic vinegar, then tomato sauce, then harissa. The mushrooms I stir in right before moving the dish to the oven for 20 – 25 minutes to finish it off.
I served mine with pine nut couscous but it would go great with linguini or other pasta.
Notes: you could easily add more garlic! Tastes even better the next day, reheats well in the microwave.
one whole chicken, washed in warm water and dried with paper towel
2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, cut into small pieces
2 tblsp. brown sugar
I like to fill the chicken with warm water and let it sit in there for 30 seconds and I do this twice while washing the chicken in order to try to warm it up to room temperature before cooking.
In a metal bowl I added the oil, Chef Merito Steak and Meat Seasoning, lime juice, garlic and cut up chipotles. This is the marinade that I coat it with.
So I hold the chicken upside down and pour in ALL of the marinade mix to the main body cavity while holding the neck cavity closed and swish it around the inside of the chicken to coat it. Then I pour it out into the bowl and coat the exterior of the chicken, on a vertical roaster, and paint it on with a brush for the first coat.
Cook for 30 minutes at 425 degrees, pull out and do the second coat of marinade, put back in for 15 more minutes but now at 375 degrees. Now take it out again (after the 15 minutes), add 2 tblsp. brown sugar and some of the drippings from the catch pan of the vertical roaster to what remains of the marinade and do the glazing stage for the final 15 minutes.
Next time I’m going to add Mexican oregano and ground cumin. My goal is to match (or surpass!?!) the chicken from El Toro Bravo here in Costa Mesa.
This is a great, mildly spicy dish depending upon the close adherence to using LESS chili powder and mild Anaheim chiles. Stray away from this at the risk of your taste buds.
3 tbsp. tomato paste
2 tbsp Greek-style yogurt
1.5 tsp. Garam Masala (a mix your can buy)
1 tsp. chili powder (insane, use ONLY 1/4 tsp.)
1 tsp. garlic pulp
2 tbsp. mango chutney
4 tbsp. oil
1.5 lb. chicken
2/3 cup water
2 fresh green chilies, chopped (use Anaheims, mild enough to eat)
2 tbsp. cilantro
2 tbsp. light cream (use half and half)
Blend together the tomato puree, yogurt, garam masala, chili powder, garlic, mango chutney, salt in a medium mixing bowl.
Heat oil in a deep round bottomed frying pan (we use American wok, teflon w/ handle)
Add chicken pieces stir until coated; add water to thin the sauce slightly; continue cooking for 5 – 7 minutes or until chicken is tender (don’t overcook, undercook and let heat continue to cook, sauce super-retains heat).
Lower heat slightly and pour spice mix in bring to boil for about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally (important to cook/meld flavors here)
Finally add the fresh chilies, cilantro and cream for a further 2 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.
Serve with Basmati rice and naan if you can find it. Trader Joe’s has a great frozen naan that heats in your toaster oven.
I wash and dry the chicken so that it is room temperature and the skin is not too wet.
I double the recipe because we almost always make more chicken for future meals and it reheats very nicely
***Note: original recipe calls for 1 tsp. cayenne. That amount of cayenne/chili will be WAY TOO MUCH. I use a solid 1/4 tsp. when I double the recipe and DJ can still eat it and he is only just getting used to spicy food.
I add a small amount of sugar, like half the amount of a single spice so if you’re double the recipe I would add 1 tsp. of sugar. It makes the spice rub become a little like a glaze and its not too sweet.
I start the oven at 400 degrees and then at 20 minutes I turn it down to 350 for the last 10 minutes. I don’t know what I’m doing, actually, but I tell myself that I’m, at first, searing/sealing in the juices and, secondly, then not drying it out by cooking too long.
We like to use this recipe on chicken wings: they are cheap and yummy. Enjoy yourselves!