Saturday, October 3, 2009
Some of my favorite childhood memories are of my family gathering together at the lake or in our backyard and barbecuing. Usually I was the sole child requesting burnt hotdogs, but when my stepdad would pull out the chicken I'd usually beg for a juicy drumstick. Usually these family get-togethers involved music, laughter, and lots of cold beers. Of course we children were never allowed to drink the beer, so you can imagine my intrigue when my stepdad pulled out a bottle of beer one afternoon and stuck it up the butt of a chicken to grill it. This was my first experience with Beer Butt Chicken...aka Drunken Chicken.
Fast forward to last month.
I had almost forgotten the simple culinary genius of beer and chicken until Phoo-D had posted a recipe for it on her blog. I still don't drink beer, but I do cook with it usually in pork roasts. The alcohol burns out of the beer while cooking, similar to yeast baking, and leaves a complimentary flavor to meat. The flavors that a cheap beer (Nasty Lite) add to the juices and gravy of roasts is better than water or broth in my redneck opinion, so you can bet I imagined kissing my bishop's feet when he said I cook with it.
Ah, who wants to drink a Nasty Lite anyway? Nasty Lite is what you drink after you're so drunk you don't notice how badly it tastes anymore.
Phoo-D's recipe for Chipotle Beer BBQ Chicken calls for Rogue Chipotle Ale, but being the cheapwad I am I went for the least expensive beer I could find. I found it, stuck it in my buggie, checked out, then realized I lost my identification. Darn my youthful appearance and I had to leave the grocery store empty-handed. So, I had The Hubs grab me a case on his lunch break--and subsequently found out who doesn't ask for identification when purchasing alcohol. Either that or they trusted that he was of age since he's bald.
By the way, did you know there's a beer on the market cheaper than Nasty Lite? I had no idea.
Phoo-D's cooking method uses what is called a vertical chicken roaster, but you could easily use a Drunk Chicken cooker like that you can often buy at trade shows or you could simply stick an opened can of beer up the chicken's rear which is the traditional method.
I went for the beer in the rear method.
It was also stormy the day I chose to make the Drunk Chicken, so I opted to roast the chicken in my oven. The trick is to turn the oven on AFTER you place the prepared chicken into your oven, unless you want 450 degree F heat blasting you in the face. Just remove the middle rack and stick your roasting pan on the lowest level. Cook for approximately 1 1/2 hours using Phoo-D's directions.
(Notice: I don't clean ovens either.)
The recipe for Chipotle Beer Chicken also calls for you to place the rub under the chicken's skin. To do this, simply use a small, sharp knife and your hand to gently pull the skin away from the chicken. It is quite simple really and should take you under three minutes to do.This will ensure that the flavors meld completely with the roasting chicken and don't slip off during cooking. Add an extra can of beer the last thirty minutes of cooking to the roasting vegetables, if you like. I served my Beer Butt Chicken with Mexican Rice and Corn Tortillas.
Phoo-D's recipe for Chipotle Beer BBQ Chicken is definitely worth trying. May the best Drunk Chicken win!
Click here for the recipe. If you don't have Kosher salt like me, reduce the salt content to three teaspoons for the rub.
What I'm Talkin' About: Recipes