View Full Version : Help With My Bird!

03-11-2009, 07:19 AM
I need some help, I am planing to cook a bird and some ribs this Sat. The ribs are good, I have been using the 321 method and it works good but the last time I tried a chicken I felt like a Which Doctor. The chicken looked like a shrunken head when it was done. Flavor was good, looked like poop. How long and how hot do you all smoke a chicken. I plan to inject, rub and use Apple. I am thinking of doing a Comp. later this year and have to do all 4 meats so on the chicken, I need some serious practice. Wish me luck..

Thanks for the help. :chickn4:


03-11-2009, 07:29 AM
I'd suggest a simple brine overnight for your bird....I cook mine at about 300°-350° until I hit 165° Takes 2-3 hrs on a beercan cooker. My birds start at about 6 lbs. I slobber on a 1/2 stick of butter and get a little under the skin, then shake on some rub and shove about 3/4 of a can of beer up it's behind. Good stuff.

03-11-2009, 09:02 AM
Welcome to the site.

If you are doing KCBS contests then I suggest you cook pieces rather than whole chickens. Thighs score better than most other cuts. Brine, rub and cook at 275 to 350 to an internal of 170, then you need to decide how you want to handle the skin. Your choices are to grill off or use sauce bath to make skin bite through tender.

03-11-2009, 11:21 AM
I agree w/Jim. Kinda have to trim up the thighs for presentation also. I believe a brine is a must as you can add flavor thru that also.

As far as just cook'n for family, I like to brine, spatchcock, and smoke anywhere from 225-275+. I've only done a few at 285, it was just to get the skin crisp. If ya don't care about the skin(like us), then brine, put rub under skin, and 225. I also only brine for about 4-6hrs on a 3-4# bird. Make sure you buy one that is not in a "solution".

Practice as much as you can for comps. Even w/presentation. Once you get it how ya want, then make sure you can repeat it 2-3times.

Good luck and have fun w/practice!:thumbs up:

03-11-2009, 11:38 AM
Hey man,

What I do is cook it regular (for chix) at around 350, then around 155-160 or so I drum up the temp to near 400 for a skin tightener. We dont like the skin as crispy as others but still like to cut through it and it says with the meat.

Thighs are the best for compin or so Ive heard

03-11-2009, 12:30 PM
Thanks guys, lots of good info. I think I have an idea what I am gunna do. I will put up some pic's on Sat / Sun. You guys have any top notch brine recopies?
Thanks again for all the help.

03-11-2009, 12:46 PM
This is what I follow for a brine,


1 gallon water

3/4 cup kosher salt
2/3 cup sugar
3/4 cup soy sauce
1 teaspoon each of dried tarragon, thyme, black pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
Start by boiling the water and then adding the salt and sugar, so that it will dissolve easier. Then add the spices to the hot liquid so that the flavors are extracted. Cool the brine solution.
Place the brine solution into a non-reactive container and immerse the chicken in the brine, weighting it down if necessary. (Use a heavy plate or a brick inside a ziploc bag as a weight). Place the container into the refrigerator and leave for 10 hours. You can also brine the chicken in an ice chest, by pouring the brine solution into the ice chest, immersing the chicken and weighting down. (Use ziploc bags filled with ice cubes, or "blue ice" to keep the brining solution cool during the brining process.
Upon completion of the brining time remove the chicken from the brine and wash twice for at least 30 seconds in fresh water. Dry the chicken with paper towels.
A few things that you need to be remember when brining:

Make sure your brine does not contain too much salt. The salty flavor of a brine is typically offset by using some kind of sweetening agent such as sugar, honey, maple syrup etc.
Do not leave the chicken in the brine for too long or you will end up with a very mushy and salty end product.
Make sure you wash the chicken in fresh water for 30 seconds, at least twice after you remove it from the brine.
Be careful about using acidic products in your brines as these will begin to ‘cook’ the meat and result in a mushy end product.
Brining must take place at temperatures of 40 degrees or below. Only place your chicken into the brining solution once it is cold. You can cool the brining solution in the refrigerator or by using ziploc bags filled with ice cubes.
Ensure that the brine solution completely covers the chicken during the brining process.
Some guidelines if you are not brining chicken halves are as follows:

Chicken Parts 1 ˝ hours
Chicken Breasts 1 hour
Cornish Game Hens 2 hours