Cuban Chicken

I my prior post I made Cuban Sazon (Cuban Seasonings). Of course, I had to make something with it. Cubans make wonderful citrus based sauces so I decided to marinate some chicken and use the Cuban Sazon on it. Cuban’s use sour orange but I went with a mixture of lemon and lime. I have cooked it in my smoker but it would be great in an oven or over indirect heat in a barbecue as well.

I started by mixing up some Cuban Sazon but you can use a commercial Cuban seasoning mix if you prefer. Then I mixed up a marinade of:

  • 25 ml (2 tbsp) lime juice
  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) lemon juice
  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) honey
  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) vegetable oil

I spatchcocked a 1 kilogram (2.2 pound) chicken. This is a process of cutting the back and chest bones out so the chicken will lay flat on a grill.

You start by cutting with poultry shears down both sides of the backbone and removing it.

Turn the chicken over and cut down both sides of the triangular cartilege at the bottom of the breast bone without cutting through the skin below it.

Cut under the cartilege with the poultry shears.

Cut down each side of the breast bone with the poultry shears.  Cut under the breastbone and remove it.

Flip the chicken over and work you finger carefully under the skin of one side of the breast. Put 1 ml (1/4 tsp) (0.8 gm) of the Cuban Sazon under the skin of one side of the breast and rub it around. Do the same with the other breast side.

Work your finger under the skin of one of the thighs and work 1 ml (1/4 tsp) (0.8 gm) of the seasoning under the skin and repeat with the other thigh.

Sprinkle 4 ml (3/4 tsp) (3.2 gm) of the seasoning over the skin. Turn the chicken over and sprinkle 4 ml (3/4 tsp) (3.2 gm) of the seasoning over the bone side of the chicken.

Put the chicken in a plastic bag and pour the marinade in. Put the chicken in the fridge for 3 hours, turning occasionally.

Take the chicken out and put it on a rack.

Sprinkle 5 ml (1 tsp) (4 gm) of the seasoning over the chicken and put it in the fridge, uncovered for 1 hours.

I preheated my Traeger Timberline to 225 F (107 C) using it’s super smoke mode. I smoked it for 1 hour and then increased the temperature to 375 F (190 C) and smoked until the internal temperature of the breast was 170 F (77 C), about 1 hour 15 minutes. If your smoker won’t get to 375 F (190 C), you could move it into a 375 F (190 C) oven for the last part of the cook.

You could also cook this in a 350 F (177 C) oven for about 1 1/2 hours or over indirect heat in a barbecue. Just make sure the internal temperature of the breast is over 170 F (77 C).

Let the chicken rest for 10 minutes and cut into portions.

Start by cutting the drumsticks off at the joint. Then cut the thighs from the breast.

Cut the wings off the breast. Cut the breast into two at the breast bone and cut the breast half into two.

Repeat with the other half of the chicken.

The Verdict

This was so good. This citrus gives it a bright flavour. The Cuban Sazon gives a delicious garlic/onion undertone and the skin is wonderfully crispy and tasty.

The Old Fat Guy

Cuban Chicken

Cuban Chicken

Ingredients

  • 25 ml (2 tbsp) (20 grams) Cuban Sazon or other Cuban seasoning mix
  • 25 ml (2 tbsp) lime juice
  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) lemon juice
  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) honey
  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) vegetable oil
  • 1 kilogram (2 1/2 pound) chicken

Instructions

  1. Mix the lime juice, lemon juice, honey, and vegetable oil together.
  2. Spatchcock the chicken by removing the back and breast bones.
  3. Work your finger under the skin of one breast half and rub 1 ml (1/4 tsp) (0.8 gm) under the skin. Repeat with other breast half.
  4. Work you finger under the skin of one of the thighs and rub 1 ml (1/4 tsp) (0.8 gm) under the skin. Repeat with other thigh.
  5. Rub 4 ml (3/4 teaspoon) (3.2 gm) of seasonings over one side of the chicken. Repeat with the other side.
  6. Put the chicken in a plastic bag and pour the marinade over it. Refrigerate for 3 hours, turning occasionally.
  7. Take the chicken out of the bag and put it on a rack. Sprinkle 5 ml (1 tsp) (4 gm) of the seasoning over the skin side of the chicken.
  8. Refrigerate the chicken one hour, uncovered.
  9. Smoke the chicken at 225 F (107 C) for one hour. Increase the heat to 375 F (190 C) and cook until the internal temperature in the thickest part of the breast is 170 F (77 C).
  10. You could also cook in a 350 F (177 C) oven or over indirect heat in a barbecue.
  11. Let rest for 10 minutes and cut into portions.
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