Few cooking appliances have a following like the Big Green Egg.
People who have one of these fancy ceramic cookers swear by them for smoking, grilling and even baking foods with consistency and accuracy that other outdoor cooking devices can’t offer.
Eric Mitchell, a certified Kansas City Barbeque Society judge and barbecue competitor, has compiled years’ worth of experience into “Smoke It Like a Pro on the Big Green Egg & Other Ceramic Cookers: An Independent Guide with Master Recipes from a Competition Barbecue Team” (Page Street Publishing, $21.99), a cookbook filled with many of his (and his friends’) winning recipes.
I don’t have a Big Green Egg, but reviews of this book online suggest that it will save you hours of research on the little tricks to get the most out of yours. They hold heat better than a traditional grill with a lid, but that doesn’t mean you couldn’t use this tequila-lime-cilantro marinade recipe for any kind of grilled or even baked chicken. The cooking times will vary, of course, but the ingredients are the same.
Tequila Lime Chicken Thighs
8 chicken thighs, bone in, skin off
1/4 cup good-quality tequila
2 Tbsp. minced garlic
1 jalapeño, diced
2 Tbsp. lime juice
1/4 cup orange juice
1/2 Tbsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh cilantro
1 Tbsp. olive oil
Whisk together all ingredients except the chicken in a medium-sized bowl. Place the marinade in a resealable plastic freezer bag and add the skinless thighs. Massage the marinade around the chicken. Lay bag flat in a baking dish and refrigerate for 4 to 6 hours, turning occasionally.
Set the Egg for 350 degrees indirect with a drip pan. With the top and bottom vents wide open, light the fire and close the Egg. When the dome temperature gets up to about 250 degrees, about 10 minutes, close the bottom screen. When the dome temperature approaches 350 degrees, about 5-10 minutes, slide the top of the daisy wheel partially closed, leaving it 1/4 of the way open.
When the Egg is up to temperature, remove the chicken from the marinade and place on the grate and close the dome. Discard the marinade.
Grill the chicken until it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees, about 25 minutes. Remove from the Egg and set on a rack, tented with aluminum foil, for 10 minutes before serving. Serves 8.
— From “Smoke It Like a Pro on the Big Green Egg & Other Ceramic Cookers: An Independent Guide with Master Recipes from a Competition Barbecue Team” by Eric Mitchell (Page Street Publishing, $21.99)