Barbecuing chicken pieces is a favourite of many, but it is not nearly as exact as some other cooking methods. Wind, temperature, the size of the chicken pieces and whether the BBQ is open or closed will all affect the cooking time. The trick is to cook the chicken all the way through without letting the meat dry out.
For best results clean the grill then pre-treat the grill with a light coating of oil or non-stick spray. Pre heat BBQ to medium-high heat. Place chicken on the grill, lower heat to medium-low. Close lid and cook chicken for 5 to 10 minutes. Turn chicken and continue to cook for an additional 10 minutes.
Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature. Once the meat reaches 170°F (77°C) in the thickest part of the piece and the meat shows no sign of pink, remove the chicken, cover and allow to rest for 2-3 minutes before serving.
Here are a few “perfect prep” tips to follow when grilling:
Any marinade or seasoning with a high sugar content will tend to burn so use caution and lower heat.
If you are going to use a marinade, allow the chicken to remain in the marinade for several hours before grilling. Always discard the marinade immediately after removing the raw chicken from the marinade and placing on the grill. If you wish to baste with any marinade during the grilling process, set aside some marinade before marinating the raw chicken. Do not baste the chicken with marinade that has touched the raw chicken.
Do not use much salt (if any) in your marinade or seasonings. Excess salt causes the juices to be drawn out, leaving your chicken dry. If your chicken needs salt, apply it just before serving. Anything with sugar or tomato sauce in it will burn.
Never apply BBQ sauce until just before taking the chicken off the grill as the sugar content in the sauce burns easily. After applying the sauce, turn the chicken frequently, reapply more sauce if required and continue to turn the chicken.
Use only medium or low heat until the final stage of cooking. Slow grilling allows the heat to penetrate slowly to the center of the cut without burning or drying the outer tissues.
To further brown chicken or crisp the skin, cook until internal temperature is almost 170°F (77°C), increase heat, place chicken close to the heat source for a few minutes. Watch carefully as it will overcook or burn quickly!
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