Hi everyone! I was in the process of getting started preparing my birds for a skinless low & slow smoke for pulled chicken today (I get great smoke reaction and flavor with this method, and it's healthier eating), when, unannounced, the water mains in our neck of the woods were being flushed out just when I wanted to get started. And, of course, during their maintenance, the water supply has been interupted repeatedly for the past 2 hours. So, I had the delema of needing to do a quick prep (I couldn't even find my butcher's twine to tie the wings and legs back...grrr), and opted to leave the skin on and crank up the heat for a high temp smoke so the birds might be ready in time for dinner @ 6:00 pm tonight...this SUX big-time...
The birds hit the Smoke Vault 24 @ about 1:50 pm, so I'll be crowding it a bit for sure. I'll push the 300-320* temp range and hope my apple/rbp rub holds up to the heat. Not making the danger zone time/temps isn't even a thought a these higher chamber temps. The singular posible advantage to this high-temp bird burn is that I might be able to get a crispy skin...not a fan of the rubber-skin syndrome, myself. Maybe the natural sugars contained in the dry rub will carmelize just about the right time for a crsipy skin...a unknown blessing disguise? I;'d be OK with the smoke if I can get some decent smoke flavor (with high heat?) and a crsipy skin on a smoked bird...that's a tough combination to achieve, but I guess anything's possible.
Here's the victims:
APPLE & RBP CHICKEN RUB
1/2 cup ground apple
2 Tbls ground red bell pepper
1/2 tsp ground sage
2 tsp ground rosemary
1-1/2 tsp ground oregano
1/2 Tbls ground garlic
1/2 Tbls ground black peppercorn
1/2 tsp cumin
1 Tbls parsley flakes, ground
1 Tbls paprika
2 Tbls kosker salt
I managed to run enough water between interuptions to get the birds unpacked, rinsed out well, dry rubbed, and my hands washed with anti-bacterial dawn dishsoap when the water supply went dead again:
I dusted the cavity with dry rub first, then, hit the exterior...under the wings, legs and thighs, then, the open areas on the sides, back and breast...I try to handle the bird by inserting a finger or two into one or both ends to lift/rotate so I don't disturb the rubbed areas, but today I just did a slam & bam so I could get 'em into the preheated smoker and get the cooking started...apple smoke, of course...I propped the wings and legs as best I could by slightly squeezing the breast to sort of reform the body positioning them against the bird, but we'll see if they stay in place for very long after the meat starts shrinking from the cooking process:
1-hr, 20 minutes in, I wanted to check quickly on progress in case I had issues with burning, etc:
It looks like a grate rotation at 2 hours will be in order, and then, stab probes in for temps and see where we are.
This really screws up my plans today, because I have a packer brisket which was supposed to go into the smoke vault while the chickens got a charcoal fired smoke in my gourmet. Past experience tells me I really have a delema with the brisket to figure out now, becuase I will be tossing it in as soon as the birds come out for resting before dinner. Pobably a point/flat seperation is only way to go now, as it'll put my brisket smoke about 5 hours behind my scheduled start time. Man, what a way to start the smokin' day!
Finished pics and the results of this redicuolously fast-paced smoke to come ASAP...
Wish me luck, I think I'm gonna need it!