Fried Chicken on the Grill??!!
12/02/10 - 21:22 Filed in: Poultry | Gas Grill | Indirect
It’s funny how you wake up some days and the day goes totally differently than you expected. I visited the Barbecue Bible message board just after getting up. I found a post there by a gentleman who’s handle is SCBBQBIll, who’d made fried chicken on his Weber Kettle. I was skeptical when I saw the post title, but intrigued as well. Up until that point, I thought the only way to get crispy skin was to deep fry the chicken. I had seen a recipe on the America’s Test Kitchen TV show for making deep fried chicken in a Dutch Oven. It was actually on my short list of things To Do. Reading the post I saw the original recipe came from the Virtual Weber Bullet web site, which was a good sign. Best yet the recipe was simple, You prep the chicken just as you would to fry it. Next thing I knew it was off to the supermarket to get chicken and batter. I couldn’t wait.
The recipe on the VWB message board used a spicy cajun fish batter, which I couldn’t find. I chose a chicken batter from New Orleans that did not advertise itself as particularly spicy. I picked up some really meaty breasts and some drumsticks. The prep was very easy. I mixed up some water and egg yolk to wet the chicken prior to adding the batter. I made a second batch up to make for a thicker coating. For the amount of chicken I had only one batch of water and egg yolk mix would have been enough. But the process was this, wet the chicken, place it in a plastic bag full of the batter and toss to coat. Then you repeat the process a second time if you want a thicker batter.
Before I started coating the chicken I’d lit the gas grill and set burners 1,2, 5 & 6 to high. I was shooting for 450 (230 C) degrees indirect. The weather was cloudy with temps in the mid 50’s and a light rain. The heavy rains weren’t predicted until the afternoon. Temps in the 50’s (10 C) this time of year is Spring-like, so I had no worries about hitting 450 (230 C). It was funny because what I thought was going to be the easiest part of the cook, was hardest. I let the grill warm up an extra 5 minutes and it just made 450 (230 C). Normally I would be seeing temps in the 600’s (316 C) in warmer weather , but I am guessing the colder temps made the pressure lower in the propane tank. Plus the tanks was just over half full, which is about as low as you can let it go in the cold weather. When I added the chicken the temps dropped again, so I temporarily lit a burner underneath the chicken and set it too low. I couldn’t keep this extra burner on long because I didn’t want flare ups. The breasts I’d purchased were meaty enough that I could easily stick a remote read probe in. Since it was starting to rain even more heavily than before I switched over to my ET-73 remote read smoker thermometer. It is gasketed and waterproof. I couldn’t do anything further out at the grill. I had all of the burners I could use cranked as high as I could get them, so it was time to watch things from the Kitchen. It began to really pour and the temps dropped further, down to 400-425 (205-220 C). There was nothing further I could do about the temps of the grill and I figured what will be will be.
The chicken took a while to get going, but once the temps started rising they did so very steadily. Instead of the 45 minutes the recipe called for, it took 50 minutes which was in the ballpark since my average temps were probably about 425 degrees (220 C). I brought the chicken in and found it did indeed have a crispy crust. Even though I had evidence this would be the case, I guess in my heart I didn’t believe it until I tried it myself. It was hard to believe it was really this easy. The good news is that this recipe is incredibly easy to make. It is also less messy than deep frying and you don’t have the leftover oil to deal with. Later, I found out that SCBBQBIll, whose post got me started down this path, had run into cold and wind and was only able to cook his chicken at 350 degrees (175 C). He says it was nice and crispy so it seems as long as you give it the time, the cooking temperature doesn’t matter as much as I thought. There is only thing I’d like to change. I want to see if I can’t find a spicier coating mix. What I used was ok and it was definitely crispy, but I would like a little more zip to the coating. So if you like fried chicken, but don’t have a deep fat fryer - here is a recipe you can do on the grill. My thanks to SCBBQBill on the Barbecue Bible site for sharing his fried chicken cook. The link below is the original recipe he found on the Virtual Weber Bullet Message Board posted by a gentleman named Al Ramirez III.
GRILLED FRIED CHICKEN Poultry Pictures Link
KETTLE GRILLED CHICKEN Web Link for Recipe
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