Thursday, 29 December 2011

018 - Triple Play Chicken

Number 18 in the list of 100 things to BBQ is the flavourful Triple Play Chicken. It's another from Weber's Complete BBQ Book, and builds up a rich BBQ taste with 3 layers of flavour. First a rub, then some smoke and finally a coating of BBQ sauce... intense! :-)

The recipe calls for chicken thighs and drumsticks, but any bone-in piece of chicken could be cooked this way. There's no reason why a whole chicken couldn't be treated to 3 layers of BBQ flavour!

Often, my attempts at using a dry rub just end up with it burning and turning black as soon as it hits the heat. So I tend to use a little olive oil on the meat before applying the rub. It helps the rub stick to the surface of the meat, and seems to protect it during the cooking process. The rub is left on the meat for at least 30 minutes, at room temperature - giving you time to warm up the BBQ.

I set the BBQ up 50/50, spreading the coals in a thin layer over half of the charcoal grill, giving a large area of medium direct heat and another area for indirect cooking. First, the chicken is laid directly over the coals (skin side first), to crisp up the skin a little and develop a nice bit of colour. First flavour... done!

Next, the chicken is moved over to indirect heat. At this point I added a handful of soaked wood chips to the coals. Second flavour... done! You don't have to worry about "low and slow" for this recipe, so leave the air vents wide open and crank up the heat!

Finally, towards the end of the cooking process, the BBQ sauce is basted over chicken and left on the grill in order to form a nice glaze. It's best to pre-warm the sauce, to maintain the temperature of the meat. I like to do this process 3-4 times, turning the chicken between applications of sauce to build up a lovely sticky coating. Third flavour... done!

I've made this recipe a few times now, using a combination of home made and shop bought rubs and sauces. In my humble opinion, it did taste better with the home made versions that the book calls for - but the combination of Bad Byron's Butt Rub and Bone Suckin' Sauce came a very close second. 

A lot of fun to make, and even more to fun to eat - if you've ever bought pre-marinated chicken from a supermarket and been disappointed with it, I'd urge you to give this recipe a try - you won't be disappointed.

As you'll have seen from the photos, I also made some ABTs to go with the chicken. Watch this space for a future write up of those fiery little treats :-) 


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