A sure way to impress guests at your next BBQ is by making a chicken that looks magnificent. Brining the chicken in beer before cooking will make it extra moist and flavoursome.
Ideally, you will have a hooded BBQ with a thermometer, but I have also cooked it in the oven. It needs to stand after cooking, which will give you time to cook your other meats on the BBQ. It is also easy to cook more than one chicken at a time, if you have the room on your BBQ. To get the best flavour, you should begin the brining process the day before cooking.
Ingredients for each chicken you will need:
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 750ml Australian pale ale
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup salt
- 1 can beer*
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2-3 Tbsp. olive oil
- 3 tsp. mild dried paprika
- ½ tsp. salt
- ¼ tsp. pepper
- Wash chicken and remove excess fat from around the opening.
- Combine the beer, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and sugar.
- Put chicken into zip-lock bag and pour in the brine mixture. Leave for at least six hours, preferable overnight, in the refrigerator.
- Drink half the can of beer. (This is for quality control.) It is important that the beer used for cooking is not cold. You can leave it out for while to warm up, but I usually pour it into a cup and pop it in the microwave for about 30 seconds before returning it to the can.
- Cut the top off the can with a pair of kitchen scissors, and add the garlic to the half can of beer.
- Remove chicken from brine and place it over the beer can so that the chicken sits up.
- Mix the coating ingredients together. Use enough oil so that it mixes to a thick paint-like consistency.
- Brush the chicken with the coating and then fold the wings out of the way, behind the chicken’s shoulders.
- Place on a preheated BBQ away from direct heat.
- Cook at 150 degrees for about an hour, and then check the temperature of the thigh and the breast. When they are both over 65 degrees, remove the chicken.
- Loosely cover with foil and let stand for 20 to 30 minutes.
- Remove chicken from beer can, carve, and serve with your favourite Australian pale ale.
* Getting a beer worth drinking in a can isn’t always easy. Coopers Mild or some English beers are often available, but don’t use stout.