Good morning folks. I hope you had a great Christmas. We ate LOTS of sweet stuff and had some very yummy family dinners. This week I thought I would go back to an old favorite of mine and put a bit of a twist on it, Oak and Cherry Smoked Chicken with Fire Roasted Pepper BBQ Sauce. To be honest, this post is really about the BBQ sauce. I created a sauce a week or so back that is so good I have been caught dipping bread into it just to taste it. We had it with the deep fried spareribs last week and had so much left over I put half of it in the freezer to use later in the year. Michelle and I had a couple of days this week free of kids and family and we decided it was time to heat up the smoker and do a chicken covered in BBQ sauce for the blog. Since it was only Michelle and me, we decided to only cook 1/2 of the whole chicken. I froze the rest for later. If you want to cook both halves double the dry rub amounts.
Here it is.
Oak & Cherry Smoked Chicken with Fire Roasted Pepper BBQ Sauce for Man Food Monday
- 1/2 chicken (a whole chicken split)
- 1/2 teaspoon celery seeds
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon lemon pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Canola oil
- 3 tbs olive oil
- 1 medium white onion
- 1 sweet onion
- 2 chipotle peppers
- 5 cloves garlic
- 1 dried Serrano pepper crushed and seeded
- 1 cup Jack Daniels
- 2 cups brown sugar
- 3 cup apple cider vinegar
- 56 oz chopped tomatoes
- 2 tbs dry mustard
- 1/2 cup molasses
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 cup ketchup
- orange, lemon, lime zest
The BBQ sauce
- It will take 4 to 5 hours to make the BBQ sauce. So you will need to do this first, maybe the day before.
- Chop the onions, garlic, Chipotle pepper and Serrano pepper.
- In a 6 quart pot heat the olive oil and add the onions, garlic, Serrano peppers and cook till the onions are clear and fragrant,add the Chipotle peppers and heat through.
- Add the Jack Daniels, simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add the Apple Cider vinegar, brown sugar, molasses,dry mustard, Worcestershire sauce and the chopped tomatoes. Simmer for about 5 hours.
- Add ketchup and the zest from the orange, lemon and lime.
- Simmer for another hour.
- Puree the results.
- Simmer 45 minutes.
- In a small bowl, combine the rub ingredients and set aside.
- Split the chicken down the back bone and down the breast.
- Loosen the skin and massage the dry rub into the meat under the skin.
- Coat the skin and liberally apply the paprika and cover the chicken with plastic wrap and return to refrigerator for 1 to 2 hours or over night if you have time. You will want to take the chicken out about 30 minutes before you plan to put it on the smoker.
- Start your smoker about 5 hours before you want to eat. Once the smoker is up to the correct Temperature, 250°, add the oak wood chips and place the chicken in the smoker. Watch the smoker temperature and do not allow it to drop lower than 225°, Add charcoal when needed in small amounts. You want to keep the smoke flowing during the cook so plan on adding wood every 45 minutes. About 3 hours into the smoke, place your chicken on a large piece of foil and coat it liberally with your BBQ sauce and wrap the foil around it. Cook covered for 1 hour then open the foil and add the cherry wood on the smoker and cook till the internal temperature is 165° when measured at the thigh.
Making the BBQ sauce is the most difficult and time consuming part of this cook. As normal, planning is everything, so make sure your not under the gun with this. If the BBQ sauce is too sweet you can add a little more Worcestershire sauce and maybe a 1/4 cup of yellow mustard to take that edge off. We had this with the Broccoli Salad with Sesame Dressing and a wine we picked up in a north Georgia winery named Three Sisters Vineyards. The wine is Fatboy Pink. It was Perfect.
I hope you give this a try and that I see you again after New Years. Take care and stay safe.