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first time chicken cpl questions

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
well this weekend im using my new electric smoker for the very first time and im cooking chicken breasts to git the hang of it and need some help cpl things

1. Im going to be using mesquite wood chips but dont no if i should use dry or wet or how much to use.

2. Where to place them top rack or bottom

Dont want to mess this up wifey will be icon_evil.gif lol
any other advice apreciated
post #2 of 9
1. Don't know what kind of electric smoker you use but I use 3-4 oz's of wood for whatever I smoke in my electric.

2. If I have a choice (smoker not full) then I will usually put the meats being smoked in the middle.

Be sure not to overcook and dry out the breasts. I have found in my smoker at 225 I can smoke 6 boneless breasts in 60 - 75 minutes or to a temp of 155 - 158 before I pull them.

Other than that rub with you favorite rub or seasoning and let them rip. I put mine in a cold smoker and then turn it on. Good luck, take pictures, and let us know how they turn out!
post #3 of 9
Not to contradict you but the USDA recommended safe temperature to cook poultry is 165 degrees. While some people let it sit for a bit after the smoke and while the temperature does rise I don't think it would rise 10 degrees.
post #4 of 9
I thought the safe temp for breasts was 160 and like 170 or so for legs and thighs which is why I have always pulled at the temp I mentioned as I normally do get at least a 5 degree rise. If that is incorrect I will definetly start taking them to at least 160 before pulling.

On a couple of occassions they have gotten away from me and I have pulled at 160 - 165 and these always seemed drier than the ones I pulled at the lower temps.

Does anyone have a link to the new guidelines and is there a difference between breasts and other chicken/poultry parts?

Thanks,
Jeff
post #5 of 9
Looks like it's 165 for everything according to the USDA.

http://www.fsis.usda.gov/factsheets/...ocus/index.asp
post #6 of 9
The USDA guidelines are just that. They are to make it somewhat fail safe to ensure even the most basic of cooks can produce food safely.

In restuarants that push food quality to the max, pefectly cooked chicken comes off at 155 and carries to 160. but this is done more with touch than temp. I shoot for a fully cooked chicken (all protein is denatured and opaque,and the juices run clear.) but it may not be clear up to 165.

But please err on the safe side if in doubt.
post #7 of 9
From what I've been reading ALL day (LOTS of stuff here for the newbie!PDT_Armataz_01_34.gif ) I can expect chicken to go up about 5 degrees after taking it off and beef 5-10 degrees. Is that wrapped or unwrapped?
Is that a consensus with everyone else? I know my steaks on a regular grill usually cook up to the next level of "pinkness" after the 10-15 minute wait I give them in foil.

When you (chef_boy812) said:
"In restaurants that push food quality to the max, perfectly cooked chicken comes off at 155 and carries to 160. but this is done more with touch than temp. I shoot for a fully cooked chicken (all protein is denatured and opaque,and the juices run clear.) but it may not be clear up to 165. "

What do you mean it might not be clear up to 165? It might not be clear until 165?

I am a dark meat lover because it stays moist. I don't like white meat that you eat, drink to get it down, eat, repeat. If the 5 degrees difference will help with that, and is safe (do you have reference that 160 is safe still?), I would LOVE to go to white along with the dark if for no other reason they taste a bit differently and so would give me more "taste for the smoke".PDT_Armataz_01_28.gif

Remember, I'm a newbie so don't tear me up, but I have been in the restaurant industry for about 20 years, so am extremely knee-jerk to published temps. And maybe that's why I don't like white meat right now because it's "overcooked"?
post #8 of 9
Safe Cooking
FSIS recommends cooking whole chicken to a safe minimum internal temperature of 165 °F as measured using a food thermometer. Check the internal temperature in the innermost part of the thigh and wing and the thickest part of the breast. For reasons of personal preference, consumers may choose to cook poultry to higher temperatures.


http://www.fsis.usda.gov/Fact_Sheets...ocus/index.asp
post #9 of 9
I always take the chicken to 165 no matter what cuts I'm using. I have never dried them out, But I also brine first. Don't know if that makes a difference.
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