A few notes/tips for the cooker:
1. I highly recommend getting a wireless temperature gauge. This makes things super easy and does not require you to check the smoker every 10 minutes. We had our gauge sitting on our coffee table.
2. If you have a side smoker attachment (like ours), make sure when you mop the meat, rotate the chickens on the grill. The temperature will be higher on the smoker side, so if the chickens are not rotated, the ones closer to the smoker will be over cooked while the ones on the far side will be under cooked.
3. Recommend a cheap spray bottle for the mop. Make sure you give it a good clean before using. I find it much easier than the bowl/brush method.
The recipe below is for one whole chicken. We did five, so that is what will be shown in the pictures. On to the chicken!
1 5-6 lb. whole (roaster) chicken, internals removed
1 gallon of water
3/4 c. salt
1 c. sugar
1 Tbsp. black pepper
1 Tbsp. cayenne pepper
1/4 c. brown sugar
4 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. dry mustard
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. dry thyme
~1 c. of olive oil
1 apples, quartered
1 onion, quartered
1 c. olive oil
1 c. apple juice
(day before serving)
1. Combine all ingredients.
2. Place chicken in the brine. Keep in fridge over night. (Note: If you are doing a large number of chickens, use a cooler to store the chickens and brine. We added 10 lbs. of ice to keep it chilled through the night.)
3. Combine brown sugar, onion powder, ground cinnamon, dry mustard, salt, and dry thyme.
4. Store in an air tight container for the next day.
(day of serving, roughly 5 - 6 hrs. before serving)
4. Start the coals in a chimney.
5. Once the coals are lit (should take about 30 to 40 minutes), place them in the smoker on a bed of unlit coals (this will make your coals last longer and will not need to light more later).
6. Let the smoker get to temperature. You want to try to maintain a temperature of around 250F.
7. Once it is to temperature, put hickory chips (or whichever flavor you want) on the coals.
8. In the mean time, remove chicken from brine.
9. Pat down with paper towels to remove excess brine.
10. Rub the skin with some olive oil.
11. Cover in the dry rub.
12. Quarter apples and onions (I suggested one of each, but use however much you need to completely stuff the chicken).
13. Stuff chicken.
14. Combine 50/50 mixture of olive oil and apple juice.
(~4 hrs. before serving)
15. Spray the smoker with cooking spray.
16. Place chickens in the smoker.
17. Spray them once with the mop and let them cook for about 4 hours. Check them every hour, giving them a spray with the mop and rotating them on the grill if necessary.
18. Stuff face!
(don't forget the beer)
Original Brine Recipe
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