So this week the local super market had chicken leg quarters on sale for 99 cents a pound. This sounded like a pretty darn good price so I loaded up with a dozen and dashed home to light some charcoal.
I have seen videos and posts about cooking whole chickens and whole turkeys on the Caja China, but have yet to find anything on cooking cut pieces of fowl. Undaunted by the lack info, it was time to light the fire.
First thing was to coat the quarters with some Tango Spice Rub. The chicken was separated into three batches of four pieces each. There were rubbed with three different blends and placed in the fridge for a couple of hours. When it came time to light the charcoal, the chicken was taken out to get it to room temp.
One thing that was needed was a modification of the food grates. The spacing on the grates that come with the Caja China are perfect for larger pieces of meat, but way too open for smaller stuff like the quarters. To overcome this I used some 1" X 1" stainless steel wire mesh picked up the the handy man's disneyland, home depot. Cut a piece to fit and just bent the edges to hold it. I did not use this to cover both racks, as I was going to flip the birds by hand later. One dozen leg quarters fit very nicely on the newly meshed rack and they were placed in 'the box'.
I took a guess and started with 10 pounds of charcoal, lit it and let it get ashen, at which time I spread it all out and started a countdown for one hour. After the hour was up, the lid came off the the birds were flipped. The aroma was incredible. Once the flipping was done, the lid went back on and about four pounds of charcoal was added, just to get some higher heat going. After 20 minutes it was time to peek, and the skin looked very tasty indeed. A quick jab with the instant read thermometer showed it was 'in the zone'! The quarters were taken out of the box, put on a platter and covered with foil to rest for a few minutes.
All in all I will say the chicken came out superb. The meat was juicy and falling off the bone. The skin could have been slightly crispier, but I did not want to over cook the meat once we were at temp.
Some adjusting of the charcoal amounts and timing will have to be done to get it perfect, but I will say this, the first go around was great!
For more info on 'The Box' click the following link.
Here are a few pics of the Chicken Trials.
Chicken All Ready To Go!
From Left To Right,
Southwest Sunset, Tango Verde & Chick N' Rib Rub
In The Box, Ready To Go!
Fire Those Coals!
The Legs @ The Turn!
All Done, Ready To Eat,
The Skin Could Have Been Crisper
The Aroma Was Incredible!
Next Time Crisper Skin For Sure!
BTW - Thank you for reading this!