Friday, February 27, 2009

Butterflied Chicken / Pulled Chicken

Butterflied chicken or as it is sometimes called, spatchcock chicken, is a great treat on a cooker, grill, or smoker. It is easy to do and can be cooked at about any temp that you can come up with on your cooker. I prefer it cooked at a higher temp at around 350 degrees if it is the only thing I am running on my smoker/cooker at the time. Other than cooking a chicken whole in a Weber Kettle Rotisserie setup, I feel that this is the second best way to cook a whole chicken on an outside cooker.

To prep the butterflied chicken, place the whole chicken breast side down on your cutting board and using poultry shears or a very good knife, cut the backbone out of the chicken. Turn it over and spread it out and then press down on the chicken hard enough to break the breast bone and you now have it.

The chicken is now ready for your rub and I prefer something like Smokin' Guns Hot as I feel it is a great rub for all chicken.

This picture shows three butterflied chickens ready for the cooker.

I do this treat on most of my cookers and will show some pictures of this cook in process on the different cookers.

This is 3 butterflied chickens on my pellet cooker.

This picture shows 2 butterflied chickens on my contraption in my large BGE cooker.

This is a butterflied chicken in my small Egg on my raised grid setup.

Chicken just going on my Backwoods Party smoker.

I have some pictures of this wonderful treat just coming out of the cookers.

This chicken is out of one of my Backwoods cookers.

These two chickens are coming out of my Backwoods Party cooker.

This butterflied chicken is just coming off of my "Old School" Fast Eddy Pellet Cooker.

These are two more butterflied chickens off of my pellet cooker.

Again, one more chicken along with some baked potatoes just coming off the pellet cooker.

I use several different methods for finishing and glazing this chicken on the cookers and that is why the pictures show the different results in my cooks.

There are a lot of ways to present a butterflied whole chicken and I think this is one of the best! I like to cut it up at the table with a good knife and then serve it right off the plate.

Pulled Chicken is another great way to use this meat. Must be a hundreds of ways to prepare and serve this treat after pulling and we use several of them and all are very good. Wife loves chicken salad and if I don't watch her, all of the chicken I cook will end up in this dish. Once she gets it chopped up and made into her chicken salad, she will use it for several treats. I like it fixed as barbecued chicken and on a hoogie roll with some hot sauce. I also like it in some Mexican type of dishes and I also use it for some stir fried recipes. It's great about any way you prepare it.

This is a bowl of pulled chicken from two butterflied whole chickens. We will usually make enough to put up a bag or two for the freezer when we cook this meat as we do use it often for several recipes.

Now, for the folks that want to kick this up to the next level, I'll give you my top secret recipe and method that will make this treat something that you might never forget.

To prep your pulled chicken for this, you first need to pull all the skin off of the butterflied chicken and put it aside. Then go ahead and pull the chicken into a bowl.

Put all the chicken skin on a cutting board and chop it up into small pieces and place it into a skillet that has a tablespoon or two of peanut oil in the bottom and then add about 3 cut up pieces of bacon per whole chicken. Now, for the folks that are the lovers of the pod, cut up about two jalapeno peppers per chicken and place them in the skillet and cook this until it is kinda crispy but not overdone.

Strain the grease out of this mixture.

Pour it over your pulled chicken.

Mix it up and you really have something that is more than good.

I like to take a hoogie roll and lay it out flat on the plate. Run a couple of beads of mayo on one side of the bun, then add some lettuce, some tomatoes, and some onions. I then place some of my pulled chicken on the other side and fold it up and eat this great sandwich.

Wife likes to make some of the pulled chicken into chicken salad and then use a whole wheat tortilla to make her chicken salad rollups. She will also stuff a Pita Pocket with some pulled barbecued chicken as a second choice. Both are very good.

Another great way to use the pulled chicken is in what I call a Mexican rollup. I start by chopping up some of the pulled chicken and then mixing the meat in a bowl with some taco sauce. I then put some of it down on a whole wheat tortilla.

I then add some finely chopped lettuce, tomato, and onions and then some sharp shreaded cheddar cheese on it. I will then dribble on some more taco sauce on the top before I roll it up.

Put the rollup in the nuker just long enough to heat it up and melt the cheese.

I will then cut it into two pieces, add some sour cream, and serve it like you see in the picture.

A great meal!

Wife will sometimes pile on some more of the veggies and sour cream on the top of her rollup and eat it that way. Either way, it is a wonderful treat.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Meatloaf on a Smoker/Cooker

Meatloaf is wonderful cooked on an outside cooker/smoker with just that light hint of smoke flavor. It is very easy to oversmoke this treat so I usually don't use much smoke wood for my cooking. It is also a great treat for the low-carbers if you use the Heinz One Carb reduced sugar ketchup over the top of the meat and leave out any of the fillers that would have carbs.

Meatloaf can be made with many different ingredients and I prefer to use some of the following for my loaves. This would make up about a 2-1/2 pound loaf.

1 lb Italian or a tube of hot sausage.
1 lb 70% lean hamburger
Sharp cheddar cheese
Bell peppers
Roasted red peppers
Italian spice
Black olives
Filler--either oats, crackers, or bread crumbs

The above picture show a 1-1/2 pound package of my homemade super spicy Italian sausage and about 1-1/2 pound of fatburger for the meat in this loaf. I like to keep the meat about 50/50 hamburger and sausage for my regular loaves.

I like to cook my meatloaves on perforated pizza pans as I don't like the meat cooked in its own grease. The grease will drip thru the holes in the pan and this makes for a better result. I use the handle end of a wooden spoon to make some indentations in the top of the loaf for the ketchup and then pour some over the top of the meat just before it goes on the fire.

This is the meatloaf about done in the ceramic cooker. I usually use a temp of about 350 degrees for this treat and take it off the cooker when the meat reaches about 165 degrees internal. I usually don't use any smoke wood as the lump charcoal will give the meat enough smoke flavor.

Another loaf going on the cooker.

Meatloaf done.

More meatloaf going on the ceramic cooker.

About done on the cooker.

This is my Cajun meatloaf and it has some Cajun spices and some crawfish tails in this loaf along with my regular ingredients.

This is a mixed cook with the meatloaf on the lower grid in the ceramic cooker.

I then added my upper grid.

Placed a pan of rolls above the meatlaof.

Rolls done and ready to come off the cooker.

This is another mixed cook that I am getting ready in my contraption for the ceramic cooker. This cook is a meatloaf, some slab potatoes, and a sausage fattie.

It is now ready to be carried out and placed on my ceramic cooker when it's on temp.

Meatloaf is a great treat and very easy to do on about any type of outside cooker.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Stuffed Bell Peppers

Stuffed bell peppers are fairly easy to make and are a great meal on a cooker/smoker. I probably don't make them up the same way twice but all recipes will come out great on the cooker with just that light hint of smoke flavor. I also do a couple of lo-carb recipes with this treat.

The peppers can be cooked in a baking dish or even in a Dutch oven with the lid off.

I usually start out with par-boiling the pepppers for a few minutes.


Italian sausage
Italian seasoning or some fresh herbs

And for the fillers if desired, we use either rice, oats, or crackers. Leave this out if you want the treat lo-carb.

You can add some of your favorite spaghetti sauce over the top or if you are low carbing, use my low carb sauce found in my low carb pizza article. (See Table of Contents). I also use some of the sauce in the bottom of the Dutch oven when cooking in this pot.

Place the stuffed peppers on the cooker and cook them with just a small amount of wood for smoke until the internal of the pepper is about 165 degrees. I prefer a cooking temp of about 350 degrees but will also do fine at the lower cooking temps of say about 250 degrees.

Serve them up and enjoy.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Fast Dougie's Pellet Fired Primo Cooker

This slick little cooker was designed and fabricated by my friend Doug Feil (USA Doug) from Decatur, Alabama. It was built out of parts from a Primo ceramic cooker, parts from a Big Green Egg ceramic cooker, and parts from a Traeger pellet cooker along with a sheet of aluminum diamond plate metal and some other misc. parts. I think it is kinda a "work in process" as Doug works on it when he has the time.

Doug used the outer shell (both top and bottom) of the round Primo ceramic cooker.

He also used the Primo pizza stone and grate along with the vent top in his assembly of this cooker. He also used the ceramic ring out of a BGE cooker in this unit.

Doug fabricated his pellet hopper, control panel, and complete feed delivery system housing out of the diamond plate aluminum sheet. He then installed the Traeger pellet feed system into the Primo cooker shell and attached his feeder and hopper assembly to the Primo shell.

The cooker is coming along nicely at this point and looks good.

He used the BGE plate setter with the legs up in the cooker and then the cooking grid on top of that.

This picture shows the cooker lit up with fire in the firebox.

I think this is a great modification and fabrication job to the Primo ceramic cooker and "kudo's" go out to Doug for coming up with this very unique cooker.