Mmmm – Chicken

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Fired up the Cookshack AmeriQue today in order to smoke a chicken for dinner.  A simple rub of salt, pepper, sage, hot pepper flakes, hot chili powder, and olive oil were put on the skin an hour prior to cooking.  I did not brine the chicken, but plan on brining next time.

A chunk of apple and a small bit of cherry wood was placed in the wood pan.  The smoker was not preheated.  The initial pit temperature was 220 for the first hour and a half, then bumped to 275 for the remaining time.  Temperature probe was set to 160 and the probe was placed in the breast. 

The chicken reached 160 at 4:08 after 4 hours 12 minutes in the pit at which time the pit turned itself off.  I left the chicken rest in the smoker, which started to cool down, until 4:30.  Internal temperature was 169, which to me always produces a fully cooked chicken.  For me, pulling at 160 sometimes has resulted in underdone thighs, to I usually pull in the 170 area.  I placed the chicken in a glass pan, covered with foil, and let rest until 5:00 PM.

I cut the chicken and the meat was quite juicy, but not runny.  The smoke flavor was very mild, but present throughout the bird.  The flavor was also quite different from the13Oct13_DSCF1965 Bradley.  Not really better, but different.  Overall however, I would give the AmeriQue the edge because of the moisture of the finished product, the quality of the skin which was crisper and not rubbery as is always the case with the Bradley, and somehow the different flavor of the smoke.

The images in this post are the result, and was one of the best smoked chickens I have had. 

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