Well....last time I smoked meats for a party.....it was August 2011 and Irene was knocking on our door. If I remember correctly, we ended up canceling the party and lost power (for a week) the very minute we had asked guests to start arriving. Fast forward to 2014 and we're trying to plan a 4th get-together and....well lets hope we don't have a repeat of 2011 for this one.
To change it up, I chose to smoke some chicken!
Chicken was dropped in the brine; brown sugar, salt and water on Sunday. It's all subjective but I don't like to use rub on my chicken. I have one that would probably work really well but it's saved for ribs and brisket. For pork butts, I use a NC BBQ marinade so no rub either. I might end up doing a brisket for a friend before the weekend so I'll post that if it happens.
After a 2 day brine, the chicken is drained and placed on the racks of the smoker. I like to coat the racks with food release because it sure makes cleanup much easier! Below are the 2 whole chickens I split and some wings.
In to the smoker everything goes. I used Applewood pellets from Traeger for the chicken this time. Combined with the brown sugar this makes for a very tasty smoke. When I purchased the smoker in 2005, I tried to use wood chips and found the traeger pellets worked much better.
Close the smoker for 3 hours and no peeking! Unfortunately, I did have to open to add water to the drip-tray and also rotate the racks every 45 minutes. It really doesn't hurt things on a smoker like this but it can mess with temps when you have some of the better ones available.
The smoker is old and doesn't regulate heat as well as it did when new. This makes it only for smoking and the finish cooking is done in the oven. All of the seals are shot and the burner is on it's last legs. Anyhow, it's not a bad deal since I have full control of a low temp for a better smoke but the downside is the whole house smells of smoked meats for a week. Well...really not that bad if ya think about it.
Here is the finished product! Had to sample 2 of the wings for lunch. The nice thing about the brine is there's no need for sauce but then again, brine is not for everyone. Nothing but a slightly sweet apple smoked flavor and that's all I need. Maybe a touch of tobassco for some kick!
Edited by oldschool1982 - 7/1/14 at 12:08pm