Monday, October 12, 2009

Jumpin' Jim's Chicken Thighs

First off, props to "Jumpin' Jim", whose recipe I used. I've not been able to track down the actual Jim, but from what I understand he was a competitive BBQ cook in the Midwest back in the earlier part of the decade. Second, thanks to my friends Tom and Christy, the Virginia BBQ Pirates, who told me about this recipe. Tom and Christy are sharing competition advice with me, and based on their success (and the taste of their entries in Front Royal last weekend), I'd probably do well to listen up real close.

One of the challenges in cooking chicken is keeping it moist while still cooking it completely. The Jumpin' Jim recipe calls for marinating the chicken in Italian dressing, which I suspect has an effect similar to brining due to the sodium content of the dressing. Although Jim recommends Paul Newman's Own Italian dressing, I substituted Whole Foods 365 Brand Organic Italian dressing. I marinated in plastic zip-loc bags for about 16 hours. I then took the thighs out and dusted with Magic Dust BBQ rub and placed in the smoker at 220F. After two hours the chicken was at 163F internal temp, so I placed them in an aluminum pan and covered all the thighs in BBQ sauce. Then I covered the pan in aluminum foil and placed the pan back in the smoker for another hour.

After an hour the chicken was at 175F, so I pulled it off and served. If time had permitted, I would've crisped the thighs on the smoker at a higher heat, but by then it was dinner time. I served the chicken with Cowpoke Pintos, cornbread and a Dogfish Head Indian Brown Ale for Sharon and a Founders Brewing Breakfast Stout for me. We were pretty full by the end of the meal. A few observations:

  • Next time I'll go lighter on the rub. The chicken was pretty spicy.
  • I wasn't cooking these thighs for competition, so I wasn't too concerned with the appearance. Even so, they looked OK when I pulled them from the pan.
  • The Cowpoke Pintos recipe called for 4-5 diced serrano chiles. I only added two, and trust me that was enough. In my opinion, 4-5 chiles would've made these beans too hot for most people.

Jumpin' Jim's Chicken Thighs Recipe

Virginia BBQ Pirates

Cowpoke Pinto Beans

The marinated and rubbed chicken at 2:30 cooking time and 163F. I pulled one thigh off the WSM and tried it right on the spot. Great moist texture and a nice subtle flavor from the Italian dressing.

No comments:

Post a Comment