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Why is Spatchcock Chicken so good?

Lei'd-n-EggLei'd-n-Egg Posts: 289
edited 2:51AM in EggHead Forum
I did a trio of spatchcock chickens for New Years Eve last night. This was my first attempt and they turned out incredible. My big question for the Wise Eggheads out there is why in the heck is it so darn good?

For other newbies, here's a few lessons learned:
1. The Chicken - I got my birds at Costco. Two pack of Young Chickens for just $0.89/lb. So roughly $16 for 4 birds. The key to remember is that they are partially frozen, so be sure to allow enough time for thawing prior to cooking.

2. The Prep - Once again I followed the Nakedwhiz's simple instructions on how to spatchcock the chicken. There's also a couple good youtube videos. After removing the backbone, washing and patting dry with paper towels, I put a litle EVOO and Everglades Fish & Chicken rub. Then back into the fridge uncovered for a few hours. Next time, I will probably wait to put the EVOO and Rub on until closer to cooking time. I think the salt in the rub pulled some of the juices out of the meat.

3. The Cook - After stabilizing my temp at 350 with a raised grid (direct), I put 2 birds on my LBGE. I fiddled with the temp a little to try and get the temp to come back up to 350 quicker. Since it took a little longer than expected I left the birds on for about 10 minutes extra. I quickly learned that this was not necessary. In pulling the birds off the grid, both leg quarters fell right off the chicken and as you can see from the final picture the presentation is a little messy. Learning from my mistake I put the third bird on, brought temp back up, and pulled it off at exactly 1 hour and it was perfect.

Bottomline, all 3 birds were super juicy and super delicious. As others have said before me, you have never had chicken until you've had spatchcocked chicken. Newbies, you need to try this cook very soon.

Mahalo,
Bryan

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Comments

  • Boss HoggBoss Hogg Posts: 1,377
    Bryen, First of all, you're spelling your name wrong. :P Regarding the chicken, I think because you don't have to cook so long as you do on a whole chicken to finally get the center of a whole chicken up to 160* breast/180* thigh, the faster cooking time allows more juices to stay in the bird. You really need to get a meat thermometer though and cook based on temp, not time.
    Brian
  • RipnemRipnem Posts: 5,511
    Bryan,

    It is and was a great first cook. You just can't really screw it up.

    Do you know a secret ninja place to get some Guava wood? :ermm:
  • thebtlsthebtls Posts: 2,300
    bone in cooking is always superior...one thing that makes it better. Faster internal dooking due to the split back keeps a more consistent moisture throughout. Just my two cents.
    Visit my blog, dedicated to my Big Green Egg Recipies at http://www.bigtsbge.blogspot.com You can also follow my posts on FaceBook under the name Keep On Eggin' or the link http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Keep-On-Eggin/198049930216241
  • hogaholichogaholic Posts: 225
    I've spatched many chickens and agree that it is the best and easiest way to cook a chicken. Congrats on a successful first one!

    I think it is so good because you are cooking it skin-side up whole, so the juices all stay in the chicken compared to seperating it into pieces and cooking the pieces individualy.

    JMHO
    Jackson, Tennessee. VFL (Vol for Life)
  • 2Fategghead2Fategghead Posts: 9,623
    Bryan, Spatchcock chicken is a very good way to grill and or roast a whole chicken. The only thing I do different (because you haven't mention ) is I use a meat thermometer to check the final temp before pulling the chicken off the egg. Like Boss Hoss said up to 160* breast/180* thigh.

    I didn't get a thermapen right off the bat and I soon learned I needed something so I went to wall-mart and bought what they have until I knew what I wanted. Keep posting no matter what because everyone here learns form everyone and thats what makes this forum so successful. :) Tim
  • cookn bikercookn biker Posts: 13,407
    Check with Hungryman. ;)
    Molly
    Colorado Springs
    "Loney Queen"
    "Respect your fellow human being, treat them fairly, disagree with them honestly, enjoy their friendship, explore your thoughts about one another candidly, work together for a common goal and help one another achieve it."
    Bill Bradley; American hall of fame basketball player, Rhodes scholar, former U.S. Senator from New Jersey
    LBGE, MBGE, SBGE , MiniBGE and a Mini Mini BGE
  • MaineggMainegg Posts: 7,787
    one last tip, all those innards and bones you cut off rinse and toss in a freezer bag and save till you have a bunch for stock :) you will be glad you did. worth the little space they take up in the freezer believe me!
  • cookn bikercookn biker Posts: 13,407
    You are so right!! It took me two and a half years before I tried my first. People don't be me. Cook up some spatchcocked birds!! :laugh:
    Molly
    Colorado Springs
    "Loney Queen"
    "Respect your fellow human being, treat them fairly, disagree with them honestly, enjoy their friendship, explore your thoughts about one another candidly, work together for a common goal and help one another achieve it."
    Bill Bradley; American hall of fame basketball player, Rhodes scholar, former U.S. Senator from New Jersey
    LBGE, MBGE, SBGE , MiniBGE and a Mini Mini BGE
  • Gotta try this! Amazing how the simple stuff is usually the best!

    Perhaps next weekend....
  • johnrezzjohnrezz Posts: 116
    Personally, I like the drunk chicken better...
  • B, I know I need to get a good meat therm, but I've been waiting to get a good one. Just need to pull the trigger on the Thermapen and a Maverick for the lo-n-slo cooks.

    Thanks
    Bryan
  • 2Fategghead2Fategghead Posts: 9,623
    Hey Bryan, I love chicken and I bet your company loved it as well. I often bake potato's at the same time. That is when I do the cook indirect and I rub evoo and kosher salt all over the taters. That kind of cook can run up to three hours at 350° it makes for some fluffy baked potato's.

    I don't know if you ever found out but, a forum member that goes by Mollyshark sells the Thermapen at a better price than anyone else does because she buys them in bulk and offers them to forum members plus shipping. All you have to do is put "Ping Mollyshark" in the subject line and state your business and she will get to you when she comes across your post. Thermapen will stand behind it. Have a good day. Tim
  • thirdeyethirdeye Posts: 7,428
    My big question for the Wise Eggheads out there is why in the heck is it so darn good?

    Using minimal amounts of cuts and cooking in large pieces helps keep chicken juicier. The same holds true when cooking a whole breast verses split breast halves, and cooking the entire lower half in one piece instead of spliting it into two leg/thigh quarters.
    Happy Trails
    ~thirdeye~

    Barbecue is not rocket surgery
  • Thanks Tim. I'll definitely ping Molly.

    As for the indirect spatchcock, sounds interesting and my wife loves taters. Definitely sounds like a winner.

    Do the taters stay on for the entire cook?

    Thanks
    Bryan
  • Thanks Thirdeye, that makes a lotta sense. I know curiousity killed the cat, but I really have to figure out why/how things work to be satisfied.

    Mahalo,
    Bryan
  • 2Fategghead2Fategghead Posts: 9,623
    Bryan, Yes, and I'm talking the big baking potato's. Try to keep them over the plate-setter. I have been known to turn them half way through the cook as well.

    This is raised and indirect but you see what size potato's i'm talking about. Also I will start me bird skin down for about a half an hour to help crisp up the skin. I have played around with it to get what I want. I like raised 400° better but because of the potato's I cook them indirect but what ever works for you.
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  • RipnemRipnem Posts: 5,511
    You boys don't forget to poke those spuds first. ;)
    Blownspud.jpg
  • 2Fategghead2Fategghead Posts: 9,623
    :laugh: Adam, Could it be your spuds are possessed? :evil:

    Bryan, be warned my friend!

    I must admit I have seen it from a sweet potato but not a baking potato. It really poofed it out there to! :silly: It looks like you lost half your potato.

    It's never happened to me and I bake a lot of potato's on my egg.

    Admittedly I usually skewer my potato's and that may be the reason I have never had a potato burst like that. Believe me I have baked them at 300°-400° plus.

    Here is how I usually bake my potato's. B)

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    that is a broken pampered chef stone (works great)

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    I know this may look silly but I have learned when the core of a potato reaches around 210° it is done. So, I was testing that theory and it's true.

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