Haven’t smoked a full chicken yet, so took the opportunity this past weekend. Parents and brother were coming over for dinner, so why not experiment on family? Complete the meal with some mixed vegetables and steamed potatoes and you have a great meal.
The first thing to do is get the smoker ready. This involves getting the charcoal going in the chimney before dumping into the smoker.
While the coals are doing their thing, it’s back into the house to prep the chicken. The process of spatchcocking is removal of the spine and laying it flat. Using a large sharp knife, cut along both sides of the spine and removing it. Once, done lay it flat and add your favorite rub. For this chicken I chose Southwest Maple rub. Delicious.
The reason for Spatchcocking is to reduce the cooking time for the bird, at least that is my understanding. With it laying flat, you increase the surface area and reduce the thickness so getting to the middle doesn’t take as long. Therefore you do not dry out parts of the bird waiting for it to reach the safe internal temp of 165ºF.
Get the chicken on the smoker and had a handful of your favorite wood chips. In keeping with the southwest flavours, I chose mesquite chips.
That smoke inside the Weber Smokey Mountain smoker is imparting great flavour to the chicken. You really only need to keep the smoke for about an hour. That will produce a nice smoke flavour to the bird and anything long is not really adding much and just wasting wood chips!
After a couple hours, get your probe thermometer and check the temp. It will continue to cook after removing, so if you hit about 160ºF, remove and tent with foil for ten minutes while you prep the rest of the meal. Cooking time was around 3.5 hours for this chicken. The large will require more time, so a probe thermometer is your best friend.
While your guests stand around ohhing and ahhing at the colour of the bird and the fantastic smell, feel proud that you did this!
Until next time.