This is NOT how it's traditionally made, and I know the smoke really won't hit much of the chicken, but it keeps me from heating up the kitchen. I'm in Texas, it's 90 degrees outside.... I'm also smoking some cheap steaks slathered in the achiote sauce. I plan to wrap them in foil later so they shred. But, I'll make a different post for that, they'll be used in some enchiladas later this week.
1-big chicken whole (can use pieces if you want) mine is 7 pounds and from our farm in Mineola, TX. All of our chickens are raised to be layers, but some get selected for the table as well.
Juice from 2 limes
Juice from 2 Small lemons (I used Meyer lemons, they look orange, but regular will work)
Juice from 2 oranges
1-medium white onion cut into quarters
1-handful of cilantro, stems and leaves (I use about half a bunch)
1-Tbs smoked salt
1-Tbs Mexican oregano
1.5-tsp fresh ground black pepper
6-cloves of garlic peeled
1-large poblano pepper seeded and stem removed (can use jalapeño if desired)
1-cake of achiote paste
Banana leaves to wrap
Butchers twine to tie off
Put everything but the chicken, leaves and twine into the blender. Blend until it is a purée.
In an aluminum pan, lay down pieces of string long enough to tie off the bird and leaves.
Layer banana leaves into pan in a fashion where you can wrap the bird without splitting the leaves too much. Some will split, it's all good.
Place the bird on the leaves, and then slather the bird with the purée. Make sure to pour some of the purée into the bird's cavity ( not required if using pieces or quarters).
Wrap the leaves around the bird loosely, then tie off. This can be tricky at first. Lay your leaves to where they want to naturally fold. Trim the string ends, and then place into the frig for a minimum of 2 hours.
After sitting in the frig for at least 2 hours, put the wrapped bird, still in the pan, into a preheated 250 degree smoker.
Now, leave it alone until the breast hits around 165. Then, remove from the smoker, and let it sit for at least 30 minutes. With it wrapped in the banana leaves, it'll continue to steam a bit.
After resting, open the leaves up, and get ready for some great chicken! This will be pretty much a fall off the bone situation. Corn tortillas and a fork will be needed.
More later when it's ready to plate up!