Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Beer Brined and Roasted Chicken

Nothin like a simple, roasted chicken with crispy skin....unless, of course, it's gone through a brine first. Brining is a great way to pack moisture, and flavor, into meats. Try it with a whole chicken. You will definitely not be disappointed.

Ingredients for Brine:
1 whole chicken (3 to 4lbs)
3-4 bottles of pale ale (I used Sierra Nevada)
2 quarts of water (or 1 quart of water and 1 quart of ice reserved)
1 orange, halved
5 sage leaves
5 bay leaves
1 cup kosher salt
1/2 cup sugar
1 tbsp black pepper corns, crushed
couple sprigs of thyme

Ingredients for Roasting:
Kosher Salt and fresh ground black pepper
fresh chopped thyme
pinch or two of ground sage

Here is the really hard part! Put all the ingredients for the brine, minus the chicken, into a pot. Bring to a simmer for 10min. Take off heat and let it cool to room temp. Or, do what I do, and add in the other quart of ice to help it cool faster.

I like to put the brine and chicken in turkey bags, set back into the cooled pot, and surround the bird with a little ice before I set in fridge. Seems like work, but it's not, and it's a good way to keep the balance of beer and water in check by not letting the extra ice melt into the brine. Let sit in fridge for 12 hours. For super duper hoppy beers like Stouts and IPAs, I’d cut the brining time down to 6-8 hours. You don’t want the bird to taste like a stout or a pine cone.

Take bird out of brine. Rinse. Pat extremely dry inside and out with paper towels. Let sit 30-40min so it can come to room temp. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Dry outside of the chicken again. The paper towel method is good way to ensure crispy brown skin. Season with salt, pepper, thyme, and sage. Truss the bird for even cooking. Place on a roasting rack or a skillet. I like the skillet. Pop in oven on middle or lower-middle rack. Roast for about an hour till the bird reaches 164 degrees.

When done, take the chicken out and let rest for about 15min to allow juices to redistribute. Carve that thing up and done. Look at that skin!

No comments:

Post a Comment