Although often used in breads and batters, beer also works particularly well as a braising liquid. A remarkable seasoning, beer brings much more flavor to dishes than ordinary water, with some beers being particularly suited to certain dishes. This beer-braised chicken recipe uses thigh meat braised in dark beer like porter or stout to add richness to the dish and bring out the flavors of the meat. Plus, the dish is an easy weeknight dinner, cooked in one pot and ready to eat in just over an hour.
A French cooking technique used in many cuisines to make tougher cuts of meat more tender and flavorful, braising typically requires the base protein to be seared then covered in liquid, covered with a lid and slowly cooked in a saucepan. thick-bottomed on the baking sheet. or in the oven. The cooking environment slowly breaks down the collagen which adds a lot of body to the sauce, ultimately requiring minimal preparation and attention as most of the cooking time is idle.
Since chicken thighs require much less cooking than typical braising cuts such as beef shin or beef cheeks, this beer braised chicken recipe takes about an hour and 20 minutes from start to finish. , with much of the cooking time also being used to cook most of the alcohol in the beer, letting its malty flavor dominate. The dish is also extremely versatile. If you don’t feel like using beer, chicken or vegetable broth can be substituted, or even red wine if you’re looking for something much richer, not too dissimilar to Coq au Vin.
Vegetables can also be changed according to the seasons. This beer-braised chicken recipe uses typical mirepoix ingredients of onion, carrot, and celery, along with potatoes that provide lots of texture depth, and yellow zucchini. But as the days get colder, squash and pumpkin are a particularly good substitute for zucchini. Although parsnips and all kinds of root vegetables can be used, it entirely depends on personal preference and what is readily available. When it comes to beer, dark beers work best for this recipe, with IPA or lager tending to be too bitter and overpowering for the chicken.
- 1.5 kg chicken thighs or drumsticks or a mixture of both
- 660 ml Brown beer like porter or stout
- 2 sauté the onions coarsely chopped
- 4 carrots peeled and cut into inch pieces
- 4 red potatoes cut into inch pieces
- 2 The sticks celery coarsely chopped
- 1 yellow zucchini cut into inch pieces
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 4 cloves Garlic chopped/finely chopped
- 2 soup light brown sugar
- 2 soup Dijon’s mustard
- 50 g Butter
- Plain flour to coat the chicken pieces
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Neutral frying oil such as vegetable or rapeseed oil
Half fill a plate or shallow dish with flour and season with salt and pepper. Add each of the chicken pieces to the plate and cover completely with the seasoned flour mixture. Add more flour and seasoning to the plate if needed. Once covered, reserve the chicken pieces.
Add a generous drizzle of oil to a heavy-bottomed saucepan or Dutch oven and heat until shimmering. Add the chicken in batches of 3-4 pieces to avoid overcrowding the pan. Cook over high heat for about 3-4 minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Remove from skillet and sear remaining chicken pieces.
Remove the chicken from the skillet and discard most of the remaining flour. Add the butter and add the onions, carrots, celery, potatoes and zucchini, then continue to cook over high heat until the vegetables soften and begin to brown.
Once the vegetables are coloured, add the thyme, bay leaf and garlic. Continue to cook for another minute, stirring, until fragrant. Add the sugar and mustard and continue cooking for about 30 seconds, stirring constantly.
Return the chicken to the skillet with the juices and add the beer to the skillet. Bring to a boil, making sure all the chicken pieces are completely submerged, and simmer uncovered for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper if needed before serving.
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