Hi everyone, just introducing myself and hoping to get a tip or two before this afternoon when I head out to buy supplies. My parents gave me and my wife some cash for Christmas and I used my half of it to buy a Masterbuilt GS40 which I expect to be delivered sometime today. Along with it, I should be receiving some apple wood chips, a propane needle valve, a couple of cheap Taylor thermometers, and some pretty decent BBQ mitts. My wife has offered to donate one of her cast iron skillets to replace the chip holder as I've read that was a wise thing to do.
My plan is to head out after work and buy the stuff needed for Jeff's rib rub and BBQ sauce (http://goo.gl/l1RVMg) and also JJ's Finishing Sauce (http://goo.gl/qnjIFo). My first smoke will be two whole spatchcock chickens and a 5 lb or so pork butt.
Before I use the smoker, I think I need to season it. I've read two ways of doing this. The first way is just to bring it up to 250-275°F with wood chips in it to generate a fair amount of smoke. The other way is the same, but involves coating all internal surfaces with a thin layer of any type of cooking oil. I'm not sure which way to go.
Tonight, I'll apply mustard and then the rub to the Boston butt and allow it to sit until early morning. I'll make a simple brine (1 cup sugar, 3/4 cup salt, 1 gallon water) for the chicken to sit in overnight. In the morning, I'll apply mustard and rub to the chicken.
In early morning, maybe 3 or 4 AM, I'll get up and light the smoker and pull the butt from the fridge. Once it is up to temp (shouldn't take long) I'll put the butt in the smoker. I'll also pull the chicken from the brine and add the rub to it at this time.
At around 8 AM, I'll put the bird in the smoker.
I'm hoping to have the chicken for lunch and the butt for supper. This will give about 4 hours for the chicken to get done and 14-15 hours for the butt (cook and rest time). I've read that smoking chicken at 225 can result in rubbery skin. If this is the result, I can crisp up the chicken on the grill.
My plan is to smoke at 225-250°F with a target temperature of 195-200°F for the butt and 165-170°F for the chicken.