A whole chicken is a great entry level cut of meat into the world of barbecue as it is relatively inexpensive and really soaks up the smoke so you immediately get an appreciation for that smoky flavour. When prepared correctly and cooked at the right temperature a whole chicken will be juicy and packed full of flavour.
The most important step in preparing a whole chicken is butterflying (also known as spatchcocking) the chicken. Using a pair of sharp kitchen scissors cut along either side of the back bone starting from the parson’s nose. Flip the bird over and gently using the palm of your hand press down on the breastbone until the chicken flattens out – you will hear a couple of cracks. This flattening of the bird allows for a more even cook and crispier skin as the heat only has half the distance to travel through the flesh as opposed to leaving it whole.
The SmokeyQ Chicken Rub has a wonderful blend of herbs and spices complete with the subtle tang of kaffir lime. It's ideal for poultry and also works a treat on lamb, pork and seafood.
- whole chicken
- mayonnaise or olive oil
- SmokeyQ Chicken Rub
- As discussed above butterfly the whole chicken.
- Lightly brush the chicken with mayonnaise or olive oil and season with the rub. If possible do this for a minimum of 3 hours before cooking.
- Whether your cooking over charcoal or gas prepare your barbecue for indirect cooking and aim for 325f/165c.
- If your using charcoal add a chunk of flavour wood (apple and cherry work particularly well) then add the chicken.
- Cook until the internal temperature of the breast meat reached 160f/71c. The internal temperature of the thigh should read 170f/77c.
- Enjoy your SmokeyQ barbecued whole chicken!
Photos and recipe by Messy Benches. Visit www.messybenches.com