Do you ever watch those barbecue competitions on the cooking networks? Well, we were inspired to give it a faux go in our test kitchen—this was our “winning” dish. We were so impressed with the presentation, flavor and texture of the meat that we joked about starting our own competition team. Fun fact: Despite the name, “butter bath” actually refers to margarine, which has a higher smoke point than butter to allow for safe cooking at high temps.
YIELD 6–8 servings
ZEST FACTOR Medium
PREP TIME overnight
COOK TIME 1 hour, 10 minutes
For the brine:
1 gallon cold water
1 cup of your favorite hot sauce
½ cup salt
2/3 cup light brown sugar
8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs, trimmed
For the butter bath:
2 sticks margarine, melted
1/3 cup of your favorite spicy barbecue rub
For the glaze:
¼ cup honey
½ cup of your favorite spicy barbecue sauce
1. Make the brine: Whisk together the water, hot sauce, salt and sugar in a stockpot until the sugar dissolves. Place the thighs in the pot, making sure the chicken is completely submerged and cover. Brine in the fridge for at least 4 hours or overnight.
2. Remove the chicken from the brine and pat dry. Discard the brine.
3. Preheat the grill to 250°F–275°F.
4. Make the butter bath: Pour the melted margarine into a 9-x-13-inch disposable aluminum baking pan, making sure it’s no higher than halfway up the sides. Coat the chicken with the rub and place skin side up in the margarine. Transfer the pan to the grill and cook with the grill lid on for 1 hour.
5. Meanwhile, make the glaze: Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and set aside.
6. Remove the thighs from the butter bath and place skin side up on the grill. Discard the butter. Continue cooking for 10 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 165°F. (Note: Resist the urge to flip!)
7. Smother the chicken with the glaze and continue cooking until the internal temperature reaches 175°F.
8. Serve hot with your favorite sides.
Get more recipes like this in our June 2017 issue, available in print and through Magzter!