In the meantime, back to barbecue. As I mentioned, I picked up these two chickens for cheap at Walmart. Not my usual meat shopping location. These however, are Foster Farms chickens, probably the third most popular enterprise in my extended neighborhood, right behind drug smuggling and stolen cars, to Hilmar and Joseph Farms Cheese production.
I prepped them with a little maple syrup-brown sugar-smoked paprika mixture and popped them in the smoker. It just so happened that THIS time I flipped through the direction manual that came with it. Never leave the vent closed when the smoke is on. Okay then ..... that's why all that horrible black buildup around all the edges and every tiny air hole. Who knew?
I wondered what was causing all that. I spent a few minutes trying to jack hammer it off, to no avail. Now I know better.
Five hours later I had two plump juicy gorgeous chickens sitting on my counter. I put them in time out too for thirty minutes, hoping there would be at least SOME juice left. You see when I punctured them with the thermometer, juice literally came shooting out like a geyser.
In no time, I had them all cut up, waiting for the food saver machine. I snacked on all the little bits from the carcass. Let me tell you, they were beyond words. Delicious, fabulous, tasty, wonderful morsel of juicy meat.
That's when I remembered just how much trouble it is to clean up the smoker grills and grates. They should make throwaways for this thing. Back to the food saver.
Since I had figured out how to make bags that were open at one end, I filled them up and sucked out the air. Again, all the juice went with it. I noticed on the front of the machine, a button that said MOIST. I hoped that meant it would leave at least a little moisture in the bag. It did. The resulting mess of juice all over the machine was half what it was last time.
It all went in the freezer until yesterday morning when I pulled one out to defrost. It was just like fresh off the barbecue. This Food Saver thingy is magic. Thank you to everyone who has told me to get one over and over for the last three years. I LOVE IT!!!
After preparing breakfast for everyone (me, the dogs and Jonathan) I fixed another cup of java and sat down in front of the infernal machine. I quickly perused the instruction book trying to jog some of those old dead brain cells into remembering how the heck I programmed it last time.
It was lots of trial and error, since the instructions (in five different languages) didn't make any sense at all. I finally just blasted ahead full steam hoping for the best. It was a little rough at first since you have to hit the Text key either once or four times depending on whether you want numbers or letters.
I tested the first button. Success!! Yay, I'm on a roll. Two hours later I did a test run and it appeared to work, until I ran out of paper tape. No tape, no worky. Once back at the Elks Lodge with lots of extra paper, I'll run a couple more tests to make sure all is well. Woe be to the person who even THINKS about touching this infernal machine again!!!
Lots to do today ... fight with the post office, drop off clothing donations, return a pair of shoes, and air up the tires on my Jeep before hitting the grocery store. I hope you have a wonderful Thursday. It is Thursday, right?