Smoked Leg Quarters with Fresh Herbs

For the most part, I am not really a superstitious person.  I have never really liked Friday the 13th, although my father was born on one, so he claimed it was his lucky day.  I hated when a black cat would cross my path, but I would usually find something about the cat that was not all black, or say that a street is not really a path, so it doesn’t count.  The one superstition I have never really been able to get away from is that things seem to happen in threes, especially when it comes to death.  I try to convince myself otherwise, but time after time, it seems to hold true.  This week was no exception.  My heart goes out to my friends and family that are grieving right now.

So what does this have to do with smoked chicken?  Well, when my kids were young, they went to bed really early – and so I fed them before my husband got home from work, just so they wouldn’t fall asleep at the dinner table.  Sunday nights was usually the one night we could count on where we would all sit down together – and we would call it “family dinner.”  As they got older, we have transitioned to eating together each night – which I love, but for some reason Sunday night dinners will always be my favorite.  It is the one night a week that I can really focus on food.  Recently, Sunday night dinners have taken a new spin in our house, they have turned into “Egg Night.”  I cook the sides, and my grill-master husband smokes something on the Big Green Egg.  We have been doing this for months, and he is getting better and better.  This chicken that he smoked was AMAZING!!  It fell off the bone, and had the most delicious smoked herb flavor, it was just a party in my mouth.  This came from the Big Bob Gibson’s BBQ Book – thank goodness Amazon screwed up during the holidays and sent us this book by accident, the recipes are incredible!  Well, the girls cannot get enough of the egg, and neither can I.

I remember many Sunday night dinners when our friends would come over, we traded houses every Sunday – and we did this for years while our kids were young. Now that they are older, we have grown apart, but I used to love when my friend’s mother would visit and join us for dinner.  She was hilarious, and had a great sense of humor.  She would say things under her breath, but I always heard them, and laughed.  She passed away this week, and will definitely be missed.  Sonya, this chicken is for you – I know you would have loved it, along with banana bread baking in the oven…

Ingredients

  • 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 6 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano leaves
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 6 chicken leg-thigh quarters

Preparation

Mix the marinade ingredients in a small bowl and whisk until well blended.  Reserve 1/2 cup of marinade for basting and then pour the remainder into a shallow dish or a resealable plastic bag.  Add the chicken and turn to coat.  Cover the dish or seal the bag and marinate the chicken in the refrigerator for 8 to 12 hours.

Build a fire (wood or combination of charcoal and wood) for indirect cooking.  When the temperature is approximately 300 degrees F, remove the chicken from the marinade and place on the grill, skin side up, away from the coals.  Cook for 45 minutes, then flip the chicken, baste the reserved marinade, and cook for an additional 45 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 175 degrees F.

For a printer-friendly version of the recipe, please click here:  Smoked Leg Quarters with Fresh Herbs

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BBQ Brisket

My husband has a new best friend.  It is called the Big Green Egg (BGE for short).  He is obsessed – every night we talk about what he is going to make next.  I love it.  I swear, everything tastes better on the egg, I don’t know how we survived before with just a gas grill.  This is not a grill, this is a BBQ enabler.  And let me tell you, it is insane.  The best BBQ I have ever had, no joking.

So far this summer, he has been experimenting with all types of meat.  We have had steak, chicken, pork – all rediculously juicy and tender – and so moist – oh, and the flavor, bursting with flavor – every single time.  But, the brisket really knocked our socks off.  This was his first one, and the first one I didn’t prepare in the oven.  He started the process in the morning, then cooked it “slow and low” all day long.  The smell in our back yard was incredible – but it was nothing compared to how it tasted – tender and smokey, with the perfect amount of punch.  It was even better the next day.  He was so excited with how it turned out, he wanted to make sure I posted this – so this is his first recipe…welcome to the world of food blogging!

Ingredients

  • One 4-5 lb brisket
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup smoked paprika
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup beef broth

Preparation

Put the salt, brown sugar, paprika, and pepper in a small bowl and stir to mix. (Your fingers actually work better for mixing the rub than a spoon or whisk does.)Store the rub in an airtight jar away from heat and light; it will keep for at least 6 months.  Makes about 3/4 cup

Apply a generous coat of the dry rub to the meat 1 to 8 hours prior to cooking (store in fridge).

Soak hickory chips in water for 1 hr prior to adding to coals.  Fill fire box of BGE with lump charcoal.  Light charcoal and add soaked hickory chips once flame has died down and center coals are glowing.  Add place setter (or cooking stone) on top of fire ring for indirect cooking.  Place grill on top of place setter.  Adjust cooking temperature to 225.

While setting up the fire, take brisket out of fridge and let warm to close to room temperature.  Barbeque brisket “slow and low” at a temperature in the 210 – 230 degrees F range until the internal temperature of the meat reaches 202 degrees F (approximately 8 hours).  Take brisket off the grill and triple wrap in tin foil with ½ cup of beef broth.  Allow brisket to rest in a room temperature cooler for 1 ½ hours.  Slice cross wise to the grain of the brisket. Enjoy!!!

For a printer-friendly version of this recipe, please click here:  BBQ Brisket

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