Needing a wow factor please.

Discussion in 'Poultry' started by arlis, Dec 10, 2014.

  1. arlis

    arlis Newbie

    Ok guys I just got my new Masterbuilt Pro Dual Fuel smoker as an "early" Christmas present (after some begging.)  I am seasoning it tonight and smoking by Friday.  Well my wife has decided she wants to have a small party next Saturday night and wants me to smoke something for the guests.  I am thinking a couple whole chickens and maybe a rack of ribs or two.  Two of the guests are "seasoned" outdoor cooks who think their food is the best and I want to show them I can hang even tho I have not been doing it near as long.  So the question I go need a go to chicken rub or method of smoking it that will impress.  Lets hear your best chicken recipes that are to die for and will have them begging for more.  Thanks in advance guys.
  2. thesmokist

    thesmokist Meat Mopper

    There are so many great recipes on here it will make your head spin! For the chicken I would definitely go with brining (makes them super juicy and flavorful) and a simple rub, put in the smoker with a fruit wood it pairs good with birds and pork and finish in the oven to crisp the skin.
    the 3-2-1 method is great for ribs. I like to use famous daves rib rub with a lil Tony's mixed in. I would hit up the search bar on here and you will get a ton of recipes. If you really want the wow factor maybe doing the spatchcock method for the bird would help with that. It's something I've been wanting to try cause It will cook a lil faster and would make a great presentation.
    Oh and def do a test run first!!
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2014
  3. Yeah, be sure and do a test run Friday so you won't have any surprises on Saturday, Do some led quarters and a whole chicken on Friday.

    Here id what I do on chicken  Find a couple of nice size birds wash and trim off excess fat and skin. Then soak at least 12 hours in a brine.

    I use a half cup of salt a full cup of packed brown sugar and a couple tablespoons of Tony's mix until everything is dissolved in enough water to cover your birds. When you are ready to smoke, rinse your birds, pat dry I rub with olive oil and either go with a light coating of my rub or jusy salt and pepper with a little Tony's. Chicken will be juicy and tender, and everyone can sauce if they like. I do a lot of chicken on the smoker and grill always turns out great.

  4. arlis

    arlis Newbie

    I agree with the test run Friday, as yall said I would hate to have a surprise come Saturday.  I have don't the 3-2-1 method on some ribs before.  I have always had to use my grill as a smoker tho.  I have been looking thru the forum and found 100's of recipes ans as you said thesmokist it has made my head spin lol and of them are starting to run together.  thanks for the ideas guys I really appreciate them. 
  5. seenred

    seenred Smoking Guru Group Lead OTBS Member

    Hi Arlis. One of our favorites is a Cilantro Lime Chicken recipe that I've made both in the smoker and on the grill. Here's a link to a previous cook:

    Whatever you decide to do, good luck! Be sure to post some qview so we can admire your food and your skills!

  6. arlis

    arlis Newbie

    thanks SeenRed.  I will definitely post some pics so y'all can grade my first work lol.  but now I'm not sure how much skill I have at it lol.  This is my first smoker, but I have been grilling for years.  I really hope that the two kinda go hand in hand some so I don't have too big of a learning curve to tackle.
  7. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Toss in some appetizers as well!

    That's where you will get the most wow factor!

  8. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    First, congrats on the nice present. Second, my condolences. I hate to sound like the voice of doom here but, you did mention that 2 of the guests are "seasoned outdoor cooks". This tells me two things.
    1. They'll pounce on each and every little perceived imperfection in your recipes and technique
    And 2. No matter what you cook or how masterfully you prepare it, they will have been able to have done it better. Just ask them.
    My best suggestion would be to go as simple as possible with something that's as close to universally liked as possible. Chicken and ribs, as simple and safe as they seem, are absolutely fraught with peril. Just look at the contentious posts on this, the friendliest forum on the 'net, regarding these 2 meats. Chicken has skin, which you likely won't be able to get "crispy" and if you do it'll likely look like a meteorite. Then there's the knife edge point where it's "done" but not dried out. It's either going to have some pink around the bone or the white meat is going to be dry. And yes, I know a seasoned outdoor cook shouldn't be scared off by a tiny bit of pink, but it's ammunition to show how your chicken is inferior to theirs. I had a relative at a dinner party once point out none too quietly that the meat around the breastbone of one of the pheasants I had shot, cleaned and grilled was ever so slightly pink. Have you ever tried to grill pheasant and not dry it out? It's a serious pain. This was as close to perfection as any grilled pheasant has ever come, and it still wasn't good enough.
    Then there are ribs. Just get that crazy idea out of your silly little head right this instant. Seriously, there are few things on Earth as hotly contested as BBQ'd ribs. There are just too many variables, from the cut, to the texture, to the sauce vs dry debate, to the rub and on and on and on. And since it's all a matter of personal opinion, your ribs will be wrong no matter what.
    No, what we need here is something that isn't subjective, that will set your guests salivary glands on high, and that given the new machinery, won't be terribly taxing on the cook. I'm thinking BEEF!! Namely something fancy enough to wow them without seeming pretentious. Tenderloin is too fancy and sirloin is too pedestrian. The rib roast, however, never misses. ( or tri tip if you can find it)
    You can do a reverse sear to a perfect medium rare-medium and do it all to specific temperature, thereby removing all guess work. And, should one of your know it all guests complain it's not done enough you can very smugly remark that your beef is PROPERLY prepared, but you'll be happy to toss it back on the grill and ruin it for them if they so desire.
    Look up Bearcarver's step by step tutorial on rib roast and Cmayna's recent post on reverse seared tri tip. Those both should help you wow your guests without giving yourself an ulcer in the process. I wish you luck and don't forget to let us know how it all turns out.
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2014
  9. arlis

    arlis Newbie

    SQWIB those appetizers look awesome, that may get added to my trail run Friday [​IMG].   And MDboatbum you make a lot of good points there, because as you said these guests that are "seasoned" cooks will find something wrong with almost anything I do.  So my question now is shouldn't I do the best I can and have fun and enjoying doing it (which is my whole reason for getting into this hobby well that and eating the product lol) and not worry about what they really think or even say for that matter, since they will probably be critical of almost anything.  Not really saying mine will be bad but just that it could be done better.
    mdboatbum and sqwib like this.
  10. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    You know, you're right. I was trying to make an amusing point, but you've made a far better one. If you don't let their comments get to you, you'll end up having a great time.
    Thanks for pointing out that taking the high road is the better way to go.
  11. red dog

    red dog Smoking Fanatic

    First, don't get too caught up in trying to impress. If you try too hard and get in over your head then you are doomed. Relax, keep it simple, and have a good time. Serve lots of wine before dinner. The more relaxed your guests are the more forgiving they will be. Being a good host is as important as the food you serve. Spatchcock chicken is a good idea as it cooks more evenly. My go to chicken is a simple brine overnight, a rub of salt, pepper, garlic, and paprika. I smoke my chicken at 270 and baste with a mixture of butter, olive oil, orange juice, and sweet marsala wine. I don't go for crispy skin but the basting will give you a soft, flavorful, bite through skin. Good luck and have fun!
  12. jirodriguez

    jirodriguez Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Bacon wrapped stuffed mushrooms! They will disappear in the blink of an eye.

    1 dozen shrooms stemmed and gills cleaned out


    1 pack cream cheese softened

    1 C sharp cheddar cheese

    2-4 Tbs. of your BBQ rub

    Mix cream cheese, cheddar cheese, and rub together. Then spoon into mushrooms and wrap with 1 piece bacon. Smoke for approx. 2 hrs. and stand back as people fight over them!

  13. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    True, and constructive criticism is always helpful, especially from seasoned cooks.

    Just as long as it's not unwarranted criticism (jealously). Being around folks giving an honest opinion may hurt a bit at first especially if they are good friends but it makes you strive to do better, sometimes I get knocked down a notch.

    Another thing to ponder is who's to say they wont love it and you'll hate it?

    When I cook for my family, my techniques and recipes are usually tweaked to their liking not mine. When I cook for friends such as Manday, the sky is the limit.

    I actually have a side dish I made that I am curious as to what the feedback will be.
  14. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    They look awesome!
  15. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member


  16. arlis

    arlis Newbie

    All of these ideas are great.  Looks like I may have to do more testing on Saturday as well.  May not have enough room in the smoker to do them one at once lol.  I have to say this forum is a great group of people. 
  17. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Remember your 'Patience'....

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