One of the best ways to rid your mind of prejudice and stereotypes is to make the foreign into the familiar. I'll confess: white barbecue sauce made from mayonnaise sounds pretty gross to me. But I trust that the good people of Alabama don't eat it simply to make the rest of us cringe. Even if it's an acquired taste, it must be popular for a reason. I decided it was time to expand my BBQ horizons.
This was my second recipe in as many days from Big Bob Gibson's BBQ Book.
On the heels of a study confirming the benefits of eating organic meat, I bought an organic chicken and spatchcocked it. That's to say that using kitchen scissors I cut along either side of the spine and opened the bird up and laid it out pressing on the sternum until it pops and flattens out.
By the way I had started off cooking at a high temp in order to burn off a little crud on the inside of my Big Green Egg then I choked it back down for this cook. Any time you go from high temps to low, it's always good to "burb" the lid before opening it all the way. I forgot this valuable nugget and gave myself grill knuckles. Better than grill eyebrows, right?
Another reason for letting it get really hot is I had my other spatchcocked chicken in the back of my mind. It was the very first thing I cooked on my Big Green Egg almost 3 years ago to the day. It's funny to see how--uh, green--I was on the Big Green Egg. First of all it seems silly that I put foil down to protect my platesetter, which now sports the drippings from dozens (hundreds?) of other cooks. Second I recall that the coals weren't fully going, so the chicken was marred with that too-heavy smoky flavor. I wanted to make sure this fire was burning clean.
- Apple juice
- White vinegar
- Lemon juice
- Black Pepper
- Cayenne Pepper
Mixing it up with a spoon didn't do much to change my preconceived notions.
After an hour of cooking skin-side up I brushed both sides with olive oil and sprinkled the cavity side with fresh-ground pepper.I flipped the chicken over and cooked it for another hour.