I love to grill and it is finally grilling season! I did have to fight some strong winds last night but it was all worth it for this dinner! This recipe has turned into one of our family favorites, especially because I cook them long and slow so it gives us a bunch of time to play outside together. For how I cook this recipe you will need a charcoal grill and you will need to find the grilling wood chunks in your grilling aisle at the grocery store or even places like Lowes carries them. I smoke these in indirect heat which gives the best crispy outer shell and nice and juicy inside.
Chicken quarters are cheap and are dark meat, I know there are plenty of people out there that are not a fan of chicken thighs and legs, I haven’t tried this with bone-in breast pieces because I am afraid they may dry out. Whatever you use be sure they have the bone in otherwise you will be making chicken jerky. Believe me though if you get quarters you will be set up for greatness!! Greatness I say!!
Cajun seasoning (I use Spice Hunter Brand or Badia, these both have a little more allspice in them the others and that’s how I like it)
1 stick of butter
Chicken Quarters (or any chicken with bone, dark meat will cook a little better)
Grilling wood chunks (hickory or pecan)
Get your chicken out, I trim off a little of the skin because I really like the meat getting a good crispy coating instead of just the skin. Sprinkle your Cajun seasoning very library and then put a little of the poultry seasoning and salt, pat down so it sticks and marinate for at least an hour.
I have a charcoal smoker grill which I will admit that works best, but if you have even a smaller charcoal grill it will work, that just will determine how much you can cook. You do not want your meat directly over the wood, it will cook to fast and you may end up burning it and not cooking the inside. Put just a small amount of charcoal on the bottom, this helps to maintain your heat and get your wood started really easy. You don’t want active flame but more of a smoldering so let it burn down just a little, you will be adding wood to maintain heat the whole time. 375 degrees is the optimal smoking temperature but if it’s a little hotter its no biggie.
Take your butter and your Cajun seasoning (depending on how spicy you want it will determine how much cayenne you will want to add) and also your cayenne and melt all together, this is what I call my secret sauce, every time I flip the chicken or if it starts to look dry I brush it on, don’t be shy add a bunch, if you need to melt more butter go for it!
Once your grill is ready to go rub some oil on the grates so the chicken doesn’t stick and add your meat. Shut your grill and let it cook! Check it every now and again, flipping it over a few times, and brushing the butter on as you go. You will want to check the temperature of the meat every now and again, the temp you have to reach is 165 degrees and since I like mine crispy it always ends up hotter then that. It will take a little while to get to this if you are cooking it slowly. You are going to know when it’s about done by the looks of it, you want it to get a good crispy dark brown and have the fat cook out of the skin to a nice crispy texture.
I serve this with black beans and lime and garlic rice…I’ll put a recipe up for that soon as well.