BRADLEY SMOKER | "Taste the Great Outdoors"

Recipe Discussions => Poultry => Topic started by: jeff_smoke on March 05, 2009, 04:32:16 PM

Title: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: jeff_smoke on March 05, 2009, 04:32:16 PM
We just happen to like Alder the best with chicken so far, but
this recipe is as much about method as the wood or the rub.
     Here's what my immediate and extended family have liked so far...
I've been smoking a bunch of chickens and passing them out to see what
everybody likes. The fruit woods were good, but we ended up liking
Alder the best with chicken.
* Jan's dry rub - http://www.susanminor.org/forums/showthread.php?p=718#post718
Rub it under the skin in as many places as you can reach, wrap it up and
frige overnight.
* 5 Alderwood bisquettes, 3 bubba pucks.
* Pre-heat the smoker and smoke generator on high.
* However many chickens you want. I try to get them all the same weight so they'll get done about the same time.
* Smoke til the bisquites are exhausted...about an hour and 40 minutes. I try not to cook over 200 degrees. At around an hour and 20 minutes, preheat conventional oven to 350.
* Move chickens to the conventional oven and finish off to around 165 or whatever you prefer.
I use the remote thermometer in one of the chickens.
* Put towels in the bottom of a cooler. I use the huge/wide foil and place a big sheet on top of the towel and place the chickens on the foil and wrap them up. Then another towel on top of that and close the cooler. Let sit for at least 20 minutes. I usually try to go a half hour if I can wait, what with all that tasty smoke flavor in the kitchen.

The advantages I found by finishing off in the conventional oven are as follows:
1. Faster cooking time. I've only cooked in the winter so far with my OBS, so two chickens have cooked between four and five and a half hours on full blast. I'm sure as it warms up, cooking times will be less. But, I save between an hour and a half to two hours.
2. Juicier chicken by completing at high temp as I think the very long cook times in only the smoker tend to dry out the chickens a bit. Even brining didn't get them as juicy as completing in the conventional hot oven.
3. Tastier/crispier golden brown chicken skin. What I like about chickens smoked in the Bradley is that they taste so good that I can generally avoid eating the skin, although I cheat a bit.
4. I don't rotate racks when I'm smoking the chickens because the high finishing heat in my oven seems to be pretty even.

I suppose one downside would be the extra smoke smell in the house when finishing off the chickens in the indoor oven. But, I find that to be a plus as well.   :-)

Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: nickld on March 05, 2009, 04:37:48 PM
I made up a batch of Jan's rub not long ago. I like the idea of putting the rub under the skin. I think I will try that with a turkey breast I have. I plan on smoking for a couple of hours and finishing in the Big Easy. Maybe using the rub under the skin will help prevent the sugar from burning in the BE!

~Nick
Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: La Quinta on March 05, 2009, 04:43:27 PM
Looks great Jeff...I don't smoke a lot with Alder...kinda a hickory chick...I am with ya on moving it inside...I find the smoke smell in the house a lovely bonus!!!  ;D Hubby does too!!!

Well done...might have to try this Alder chicken thing!!
Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: Smokin Soon on March 05, 2009, 10:31:11 PM
I have only used Alder with fish. I just might mix some in with my required Hickory.
Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: jeff_smoke on March 06, 2009, 01:48:15 AM
I made up a batch of Jan's rub not long ago. I like the idea of putting the rub under the skin. I think I will try that with a turkey breast I have. I plan on smoking for a couple of hours and finishing in the Big Easy. Maybe using the rub under the skin will help prevent the sugar from burning in the BE!

~Nick

Hi Nick, I've read a number of posts regarding your Big Easy. Can you or someone give me the scoop on that unit? I googled it briefly the other night, but wasn't sure I was hitting the right grill. From what I've read, owners seem to swear by it and it appears to work well with the Bradleys.
     The only grill I have currently is a Texas Pitcrafters infrared unit that I mainly use for steaks. It does a great job for that, but I can't bbq anything messy on it so as not to clog up the gas holes in the ceramic heating unit. So, I've been thinking of picking up a supplemental bbq unit.
Thanks.
Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: Habanero Smoker on March 06, 2009, 01:52:59 AM
Here's a link to the Big Easy forum. You will get a lot of information over there:

http://sizzleonthegrill.com/user-forums/
Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: Ka Honu on March 06, 2009, 07:05:07 AM
Here's (http://www.charbroil.com/Consumer/ProductSeriesPromo.aspx?ProductSeriesID=95) the link to The Big Easy product info on the Char Broil website.

Think of it as an infrared, high-temp rotisserie with no moving parts.  Lower food into the chamber and those little rays cook it from all angles.  I still haven't figured out the science, but it works like a charm.  As you browse the forums (Hab's link above) you'll see some really tasty and imaginative uses the gang has come up with.  It's not just for turkey anymore!
Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: jeff_smoke on March 06, 2009, 02:29:39 PM
Thanks folks; I'll check it out. Interesting about the infrared part
of it. I think that's such a cool technology.

Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: jeff_smoke on March 06, 2009, 02:49:02 PM
And, I thought it was some kind of grill.  :)
That unit looks really cool, or hot or something.
So, does it work as advertised for turkeys, e.g. fast
as frying, moist results, etc ?
And, of course I'm wondering how a Bradley pre-smoked
turkey would be finished off in one of these.
    My wife would normally want to smack me upside
the head if I up and bought one since I just got
the OBS for Christmas. But, I just had surgery and
she feels all sorry for me right now; putty in my hands. 
It's all a matter of timing. ;D
Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: Ka Honu on March 06, 2009, 04:30:42 PM
I've roasted and oil-fried turkeys all my life and will never do either again.  TBE is awesome - every time I've had people over for TBE-fried turkey they tell me it's the best turkey they've ever eaten. You get the crisp skin and juicy meat you expect from fried turkey in about 8-10 minutes per pound total time (no bringing oil to temp and no 4-hour cooling down period required - just put it in, light the gas, and check your thermometer, take it out and let the unit run for another 15 minutes to clean it).  Other benefits over oil-frying are that you can use a rub and not have it wash off in the oil and you get great drippings in the pan at the bottom for gravy. 

There is a downside, however.  Your guests find very imaginative ways to steal your leftovers.

I haven't done it yet but I plan to cold-smoke my next turkey for an hour or so and then cook it in TBE.  I'm not planning on hot-smoking because I don't want to take a chance on anything less than the "usual result" from my TBE - a perfectly fried bIrd.
Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: westexasmoker on March 06, 2009, 05:05:09 PM
Totally agree with Ka Honu!  I'll never go back to my old fryer, matter of fact if somebody wants one come get it!

C
Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: jeff_smoke on March 07, 2009, 12:16:32 AM
Ok Ka Honu,
      you convinced me. I just bought one for my brother who
lives around the corner, for his birthday. He's "Mr. Turkey" when
it comes to brining and all that.
      I'm with you on the cold smoke test. I had a smoked turkey
around Christmas that was an internet bought gift and it was
fantastic. I'd be interested in how that turns out for you.
I'll bet you will have found your ultimate method.
      Awhile ago I did some research on turkey brines and found that
these two were about the most highly rated that I could find. I had
sent them to my brother to try out. Maybe you might want to try one if you
haven't seen em yet. "Mean Chef's Apple Brine", or "Mean Chef's Maple Brine"
http://www.recipezaar.com/recipe/reviews?rid=23687&sort=h&pg=1
http://www.recipezaar.com/Mean-Chefs-Maple-Brine-23686
     You read some of the raves on these two and it makes you want to
run down to the market and get a turkey.   :)


Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: Ka Honu on March 07, 2009, 12:58:49 AM
I've got a couple of good recipes for "New England" brines - one has maple syrup and one has molasses & espresso.  I don't know why they're called New England brines, especially since one of them also includes a recipe for a maple redeye gravy, but they're pretty good stuff.  Anyway, the point of this is to be very careful when using TBE on anything with sugar on the surface.  It can burn pretty quickly.  If you use sugar in your brine, make sure to rinse well before putting it in TBE.
Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: jeff_smoke on March 09, 2009, 12:47:32 AM
Thanks for the tip. I guess the heat is so high to be able to
cook as fast as frying in oil.
Title: Modification getting the rub on...
Post by: jeff_smoke on April 19, 2009, 05:57:10 AM
Something else I tried last night is to slice the skin open over the breasts
and peel it back even over the legs so that it's easier to get rub thoroughly
covered. I've been having a hard time getting rub into several areas including
the legs with the skin in place. After the rub, I just pin the skin back up with
toothpicks in order that it keep the moisture in the meat. Seems to work well.
I didn't notice any difference yet as far as moistness or tenderness and it's much
easier to get the rub on the meat. Faster too.
Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: Habanero Smoker on April 19, 2009, 02:11:56 PM
Thanks for that information. Nice tip.
Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: Smokin Soon on April 19, 2009, 08:22:25 PM
Jeff, that's exactly what I do to "hide" the heavy sugar rubs from the Big Easy. On Turkey Legs that I have cured, I put the sweet stuff under the skin, and the spicy rub on the skin. And yes, once you have "violated" the skin you need to tack it down with toothpicks. Works well for me.
Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: pfowl01 on April 20, 2009, 06:59:58 AM
Quote
Something else I tried last night is to slice the skin open over the breasts
and peel it back even over the legs so that it's easier to get rub thoroughly
covered. I've been having a hard time getting rub into several areas including
the legs with the skin in place. After the rub, I just pin the skin back up with
toothpicks in order that it keep the moisture in the meat

Something else you could try is mixing the rub with softened butter to make a compound butter. Loosen the skin from the meat with your fingers and put a spoonful under each area...breast,thigh, drumstick. Then use your fingers to spread the mixture from the outside.
I haven't done this in the smoker yet, but I've done it with beer can chickens on the grill....excellent ;D
Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: jeff_smoke on April 25, 2009, 03:25:38 AM
Hi guys,
    sorry I've been pretty busy and didn't get a chance to log in.
pfowl01; good idea about the butter mixture. It's interesting that I thought of the same
thing about a month ago, except that I was going to try to make a slushy mixture that maybe
I could inject around the bird and then use your rub from the outside method. I didn't get a chance
to try that before I decided to just peel it back.
I found no difference in the moistness of the chicken after I peeled the skin back. It is so much
easier to put the rub on that I've made that a permanent change to my cooking.
With the toothpicks in place, the skin sort of fuses together during cooking
so that it seems it was never cut to begin with.
     Smoking Soon, my brother loves the Big Easy that I got him for his birthday. We were going to do a turkey today. I was going to smoke it for a couple hours, then transfer to his BE to finish it off. However, he ended up getting the second spoiled fresh turkey in about a month. Even though he purchased before the "sell by" date, both were bad. So, we'll try again maybe next week.
I was amazed how juicy the BE makes the turkey though.
     Has anyone had any experience with the larger BE sold from Costco ? I thought it would be nice to have one that could handle a larger bird or just more food in those multi-level baskets. But, some of the reviews were bad regarding unevenness of cooking. Could it be the larger size is not a good thing for some reason? Maybe it's something to do with trying to cook a smaller bird in that large container. Maybe the bird might sit off-center in that case or something? I heard wind is not good w/ BE. Maybe that was it.
    Anyone have experience with the jumbo Big Easy ?
Title: Re: Smoked Chicken with Alder Wood
Post by: MrCucumber on July 07, 2019, 03:04:04 PM
Great idea with Alder Wood, thanks! I was looking for something new to try :) I can also recommend this recipe https://club.cooking/recipe/smoked-chicken-breast/ (https://club.cooking/recipe/smoked-chicken-breast/) Very easy and helpful  ;)