Monday, June 18, 2012

Beer Can Chicken – Buffalo Style

Love buffalo wings but don’t want to have to eat 20 of something to get full?  Try this recipe, which combines the moist, tender, smoked flavors of beer can chicken with hot buffalo wing sauce and a smooth blue cheese béchamel sauce.

For this recipe, you start with a cayenne pepper-based dry rub, smoke the chicken beer-can-style, and then drizzle it with the two sauces.  Enjoy!

Ingredients (serves 4):

1 whole chicken, abut 4.5-5 pounds
¼ cup vegetable oil
Salt and pepper

Pepper dry rub:

1 tablespoon each of the following: sea salt, black pepper, paprika, cayenne pepper, red pepper flakes, garlic powder, onion salt, mustard powder
2 tablespoons chili powder
3 tablespoons brown sugar

Buffalo sauce:

1 stick butter (1/2 cup)
½ cup hot sauce (I strongly recommend Frank’s Hot)

Blue Cheese Béchamel:

3 tablespoons butter
¼ cup vegetable oil
½ cup flour
3 cups milk
½ pound blue cheese, crumbled


1.    Drink half a can of beer. Boo-yah!
2.    Remove giblets from chicken, rinse inside and out, then pat dry with paper towels.
3.    Brush chicken with olive oil and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper.
4.    Combine all dry rub ingredients. Rub generously over chicken.

5.    Set up grill so that charcoal is on one side, along with some wood chips that have been soaked in water, and a drip pan is on the other.
6.    Shove the beer can into the cavity of the chicken.  Place chicken on the grill, and stand it up so that the can and two legs form a tripod.  Tuck the wings into the chicken so they don’t dry out.
7.    Cook the chicken over indirect heat, covered (with the holes in the lid directly above the chicken) for approximately 75 minutes, until it reaches 165 degrees in the breast or 180 degrees in the thigh.  I’d recommend spinning the chicken around about halfway through so that one side doesn’t get to blackened.

8.    When the chicken is almost ready, prepare your sauces.  The buffalo sauce is super easy.  Melt the stick of butter, add hot sauce, and stir. Voila!
9.    For the blue cheese sauce: Add the butter and oil to a saucepan and melt butter over medium heat.  Whisk in the flour to form a roux, and whisk briskly for about 2 minutes.  Slowly add  the milk, whisking constantly, and then simmer for 8-10 minutes, whisking occasionally.  Stir in the blue cheese and you’re good to go.
10.    When the chicken is cooked through, remove it from the grill and let it rest – still standing on the can – for 10 minutes before removing the beer can (be careful, it’s still going to be pretty hot) and then carving the chicken.
11.    Serve the chicken, drizzle with the sauces, and enjoy!

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