Beer Bacon Chicken - My Comfort Food
Beer, Bacon, and Cream, how can you go wrong?
This is a recipe that I learned from my aunt when visiting her in France, and then adapted for myself. Its based on a traditional French dish, and is a great comfort food for a those cold rainy days. Its also really easy to make, and takes no more time to do for a crowd than for a few people. This is simple, will impress your (insert important person here), perfect for winter, great for potluck (and we all know those seem to happen a lot in the summer), you can make it ahead and just heat it up in the oven or keep it warm, so its also great for a party. And to top it off it's got all you basic food groups: protein, starch, beer, bacon and cream!
This Recipe is Crock Pot Friendly!
- 4 chicken peices (bone in
- skin on)
- 1 bottle of beer
- 500 ml chicken or veg stock
- 2 cm thick peice of bacon
- 250 ml cream 35% (no
- milk will not work as well)
- 1/4 tsp Worchestershire sauce
- 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 3 -4 cloves of garlic
- salt and pepper to taste
Chopping and Cutting
The first thing you need to do is chop up your garlic, if you have a garlic press, you can use it, but I like to use a knife and a cutting board. Next you need to cut your piece of bacon in half lengthwise, then in 1 cm strips, as shown here. They do not need to be exactly the same size, but should be a good size to eat without having to cut them. Remember, they will shrink when cooked.
While you have measured and cut everything, you need to heat up your pot to a medium heat. When the pot is hot, add your bacon, and cook until most of the fat has rendered out and the bacon is crispy on the outside. Remove the bacon from the pot and fry the chicken. You are not trying to cook the chicken all the way through, just browning the skin. The piece of chicken will come off the bottom easily when it is browned properly, so no need to fight with it. Do this with however many pieces of chicken will fit in the bottom of your pot, remove them and repeat until all of your chicken is browned. This process also renders out a lot of the fat from the chicken skin, so you can remove most of the fat from the bottom of the pot when you are finished.
Using the Right Pot
Choose a pot that will fit all of your ingredients at the end, because this is meant to be a one pot dish. Having the flavors stick to the bottom is a good thing for this recipe, so use a stainless steel or cast iron pot, not a non-stick!
Cooking for a Crowd?
This is a great pot to consider if you cook for a lot of people, or if you make your own stock.
Making the Sauce
put the bacon back in the pot, and add the garlic. When the garlic is cooked (when you can smell it) deglaze the pot. You accomplish this by adding a small amount of beer to the hot pot and scraping the bottom with a wooden spoon. This will take up all the bits that have stuck to the bottom, and add flavor to your sauce. Once this is done, add the mustard and Worchestershire sauce. Stir, then add the rest of the beer, the stock and the chicken. Let this simmer for about an hour.
You're Almost Done!
When the chicken is cooked, remove it from the pot and let the liquid reduce for about 15 mins. When the liquid has reduced, add the cream. Do not add the cream until you are ready to serve, if you are making this ahead of time, add it after you have reheated the rest, or your cream might curdle. Stir, then put the chicken back, or pour the liquid over the chicken in a serving dish.
Thats It! You're Done! - Serve with your favorite starch and veg
What to Serve it With?
I would recommend mashed potatoes, coucous, or pasta for the starch. For the veg, you want something that's savory and fresh, like a salad on the side or crunchy green beans. Think Mediterranean flavors.