Monday, January 31, 2011

beer chicken (crockpot)

Astonishingly easy and presumably flexible (and based on this recipe from one of my favorite bloggers).

After this was done, I removed the chicken and the vegetables, took off all the usable meat, threw the bones back in the slow cooker, added water up to the top, and cooked on low overnight. Cool, skim, strain... instant delicious broth. Woo!
  • 7-8 lb oven roaster chicken (Although my grocery store often only has 5lb+ fryers, and they work fine too. Just gives less meat.) [Mine was about 5 pounds too.]
  • One onion cut into large pieces
  • Several stalks of celery, with their leafy tops (I use 2-3)
  • 1 orange, quartered
  • 1 bottle of Guinness draught beer [I used Sam Adams]
  • 4 whole cloves of garlic [I added]
  • 1 large carrot, sliced into 1-inch pieces [I added]
  • Salt, pepper, paprika, thyme [I added savory]
Put the chicken in the crockpot (recipe says "boobs up" but I think I actually did it backward? I can't imagine it matters). Layer all the veggies in around it. Pour the beer over everything. Sprinkle on the spices.

Cover and cook on low for at least 5 hours. Mine was on for more like 8, and then on warm for another few... don't think you can go wrong here. I didn't measure the temperature, but the chicken was clearly cooked through -- no pink anywhere.


Alissa said...

Wow - you made a whole chicken? I've never made a whole chicken, but I have 2 in the freezer downstairs. I think they're small fryers. This sounds really good, though, and we have Guinness at home right now.

Did the stock pick up the flavor of the beer, or did it taste like regular stock?

What about the chicken skin? It seems like chicken skin would be gross in the crockpot - like it wouldn't get crispy, but instead would just lend it sliminess to everything else in the pot for 5 hours.... ?

shannon said...

You definitely do not want to eat the chicken skin after your chicken has been in the crockpot all day. But everything else does not get slimy, FYI.
Throw the skin in the pot with the bones next time, and then skim it out when you pull out the bones. Put the skimmed broth in the fridge overnight and then skim all the fat off the top. It'll be even better. :)
(I would think the amount of beer/flavor of the beer would be diminished when you fill the whole thing up with water.)
I'll be trying this recipe this weekend. Will report back. :)

gwen said...

Correctemundo! The chicken skin doesn't get crispy, but it didn't make anything else slimy either. I pulled the big piece off the top after it was done cooking and the rest got thrown in with the stock and strained out when it was done. I did have to skim the broth after it cooled, like Shannon said, but no more than you usually would.

And the stock I made overnight definitely had a more intense flavor, due mostly to it cooking for so long, I think. Maybe there's a little beer taste? But it's not identifiable by me, someone who does not like beer. :)