Two Men, Two Pits and a Blog

Honey Tinted Hickory Smoked Chicken Legs

A chimney of hard wood lump charcoal crackled on the pit, its campfire-like aromas enveloping the patio. I long have 20130528_184739_edit0_edit0fancied the patron scent of lump charcoal. The way it lights, smells,  and pops like a Jack Pine fire kindled on the wild lake shores of the Canadian shield. Something in its fragrance, its mood, that transports me all at once, back to those rugged expanses of wilderness, and earthy camps from whence I have tarried long in my youth. I poured the fiery chimney load to one side of the old kettle grill, and reminisced some more like men do whilst playing with fire. My gaze sweeps over the back yard, as I mingle with the coals. The grasses surrounding my patio grow long now, with the ilk of a deep and abiding green. The sort of green that is there to stay. And there is a symphony of song birds too, perched all about, all yapping it up like a room full of women scrap booking, with hot tea at their sides. The sky is gray, the sort of gray that is a bridesmaid to the wet season it seems.  Nary a breath of wind, and its neat to see the smoke from the grill go straight up for once. Some mallards conspire at the pond’s edge, rain drops cling to a lone Petunia, and a Canadian goose ambles by, trying to nonchalantly as a goose can I guess, check out my supper, and confirm it is not their kin they smell roasting under the lid.

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No, it’s not goose, tho one day I probably should I suppose, just to get the awkwardness out-of-the-way. Nay, today on the grill is a simple affair – just some chicken legs, smoked over some hickory, with a light, honey twist. It’s real easy to do, easier than a lot of grill keepers might tell you. For it is an age-old rule of grilling, to apply your sweet sauces at the end of the cook, for the sugars inherent to sweet things can easily burn, and hence ruin your intended spoils as easily as a favorite dog squatting over your new carpet.  You don’t let your dog onto your new carpet, and you certainly don’t put sweet things on your BBQ at the beginning of a cook out.  But I do. And you can too if you’re careful is all. I rubbed down the chicken legs first in honey, then dusted them in liberal fashion with some Suckle Busters Competition Rub. Then set those legs in-direct of course for the entirety of the cook. A small piece of hickory wood for the smoke, placed directly on the coals. Lid on with the vent over the meat for a proper draft. Oh what sweet smoking pleasure it is, to kick back in your BBQ chair, lovely beverage in hand, and simply watch the smoke curl there. And to smell the damp earth mingle with that of smoldering hickory.

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The only trick really to these sorts of sugary endeavors, lest the burning fates acquire your supper, is simply to keep an eye on it. Keep your tongs close, and check in on the meat. It’s OK to lift the lid, for this is no 14 pound pork butt or anything. Nay these legs will cook all too fast as it is. So visit them often, and let them know you love them. Pamper them, and turn them, and position them accordingly to your pit master instincts. If you see some going astray, be there for them, to catch them, and set them back on the proper path to excellence. See how they sing bathed in a fine hickory smoke. And note also, off-hand and by-the-way,  how the world has spun on without you for a while now, whilst tending your humble pit. A sure sign that you’re doing it right.  For you are in your own little paradise now, aside glowing coals, and gently wafting, blue-tinted smoke. You have put meat to flame, and in that alone there is something good enough, and it is well with your soul. Tongs raised to the heavens, this is your time now, to govern your meat with a supreme authority bequeathed those shapely souls who tarry near the fires and grilling posts of yore.  Ah yes, grilling with honey – let us at once take our meat by the arm and walk it slowly down that fiery aisle, thus to culinary matrimony with our impending, tho forgiving bellies.  Near the end of the cook, I  brushed on a little more honey, just because.  A little something more, as it were,  for the old goose to think about. Amen.

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Honey Tinted Hickory Smoked Chicken Legs. Dang! And yes, we ate the broccoli too!

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22 responses

  1. Such a shame Canada goose tastes so nasty – otherwise you could have had another course for dinner… 🙂

    May 30, 2013 at 2:05 pm

  2. Adam

    Mmmmmmm. Can smell that and I’m 4,000 miles away.

    May 30, 2013 at 2:19 pm

  3. What a wonderful feast, thanks for sharing, your words and pictures always get me hungry for smoke.
    Cheers
    Marcus

    May 30, 2013 at 3:08 pm

  4. I saw the goose looking over the top and thought, hmm Peeking (Peking) Duck. Seriously though another good recipe.
    Laurie.

    May 30, 2013 at 4:32 pm

  5. Liz

    I realize you were talking about chicken legs, but boy howdy if it didn’t sound like you were talking about raising children 😉

    Love that you turn conventional wisdom on its head and put that sweet stuff on before grilling. The payoff looks amazing!

    May 30, 2013 at 9:39 pm

    • Ah, an insightful take on it. In truth, yes, there was more going on here than just cooking chicken legs. You are very astute!

      May 31, 2013 at 8:55 am

  6. Reblogged this on Kathy's Blog.

    May 30, 2013 at 10:35 pm

  7. Masterful explanation.

    I can tell spring has inserted its awesomeness into your creative being

    May 31, 2013 at 5:38 am

    • Thanks oh bearded one. This is true, I am and have always been, inspired by the spring. The season speaks to me. Winter does too. And I guess autumn does like wise. Well crap, I guess they all do.

      May 31, 2013 at 8:58 am

  8. Reblogged this on The Beard it Speaks and commented:
    Such eloquence.

    May 31, 2013 at 5:41 am

  9. Reblogged this on the artisanal grill and commented:
    This looks great POTP!

    May 31, 2013 at 9:12 am

  10. … just because … 😀

    June 1, 2013 at 10:19 am

  11. Pingback: Marinated Venison with Fabio Viviani’s Dirty Cauliflower | Simplify with Sarah

  12. And with the Goose so dutifully passing in the background? OH SURE!!! I would not think it was GOOSE! Love your site and I just could not let that sentence go by (the Goose) without a comment. Thank You so much for dropping by my site and liking it.
    “Summer Fun Leaving You In The Dust”. I certainly will return. 😀

    June 5, 2013 at 7:00 pm

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