Sunday, October 9, 2011

Spatchcocked Meijer Chicken

Another beautiful fall day here in Ohio. Cool this morning but T-shirt weather in the afternoon. The only chore I was planning was to take down the 6 hummingbird feeders, I had not seen any since the 5th. Sitting on the deck & talking to my Mother, I saw a hummer. I took down the 3 large ones and refilled the 3 smaller ones in case there were more stragglers coming through. That was a record for me Oct 8th is the latest I have seen one. Me & the dog sat out enjoying the day, the wife was doing some errands & shopping.

I had bought a 6.5 lb Meijer chicken & was going to spatchcock it. After cutting out the backbone I always cut through the bone on each side of the breast bone so it will lay flat. Some people also remove the breast bone but then you may as well split it in half for ease of handling. I like to leave the breast bone in and that makes it easy to remove from the grill. I do them skin side up & don’t turn. The right side of my smoker is hotter so I place the chicken, leg & thighs to the right side.

At 3:00 I cut the chicken, washed & dried it then in the fridge to air dry some. I planned to get it on at 4:30. I chopped 3 cloves of garlic, 4 Tbs of butter in a dish, melted in the microwave, to baste the chicken.

On pelletheads some of the purists didn’t like the fact that the Meijer chickens are injected with 12% solution. Meijer says it is all natural chicken broth. I like them since they save me a brining step and come out juicy. I am including a photo of the nutritional chart for anyone watching their fats, sodium, & calories. If you don’t eat any of the skin the fat would be a lot less.

A little after 4 I started up the smoker & set to 250 deg. I got the chicken on at 4:30, brushing both sides w/garlic butter first. I also put the backbone on to use for soup later. My wife had come home & we sat out while the chicken cooked. I left it on 250 deg for an hour, then inserted the temp probe & went to 300 deg. IT of the chicken was 120 deg.
At 6:00 the IT was at 159 deg, I brushed on some more garlic butter & went to 325 deg to finish up. At 6:25, almost 2 hours it was 180 deg IT. I had left over broccoli cheese rice, and heated some baby peas & pearl onions to serve with it. I also had more of the rosemary focaccia for bread & butter. Serving the chicken works out great, my wife prefers the breast & I prefer the leg & thigh, so no arguments! All tasted good, chicken was tender & super moist, my wife said the wing bone pulled right out.

Nutritional chart

On the smoker

Ready to serve

My Plate

Smokin Don

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