I find beer to be one of the best liquids to cook with meat. I cook beef roasts all the time with beer. So, when I had some chicken legs to make, I decided I should just make them drunken chicken legs.
To get this chicken to perfection you will start by marinading the chicken in beer and garlic cloves. Yep. Beer and garlic. Add some salt for good measure. I let the chicken marinade in a ziploc bag for at least 8 hours. Let’s be honest, it was probably 24 hours.
Once I was ready to make the chicken, I pulled the chicken out of the beer and reserved the liquid for the drunken gravy I made.
Crispy Beer Chicken Legs
I braised the chicken in my Le Creuset braiser. I love this pan. Love may not be strong enough. This pan is my jam. Everyone should own one.
Anyway, the chicken and the garlic pan fried for about 10 minutes on each side over a medium heat. The skin provides plenty of fat, but feel free to add a little butter to the braiser before piling the chicken in the pan. I did at least. Butter and beer make everything better.
Once both sides are crisp, sprinkle with thyme leaves and put the chicken in a 350-degree oven to finish cooking.
Beer Gravy with Mushrooms
This gravy is one of those gravies I would just eat with a spoon. Lordy, who know beer could make such a good gravy. So, snag that reserved liquid, butter, some onions, mushrooms, garlic, cornstarch and chicken broth. Get the onions, garlic diced and mushrooms sliced and sautéing in the butter.
I then made sure I had at least two cups of liquid between the beer marinade and chicken broth. I mixed two tablespoons of corn starch into the liquid. Once the mushrooms and onions were soft, I added the liquid and stirred till thick. Add the milk or cream and thyme to the thickened gravy.
If you want more gravy, mix one tablespoon per one cup of cold liquid. Remember always combine corn starch with cold liquid.
Bring the chicken and gravy together with a big old heap of mashed potatoes. Grab a beer and enjoy dinner.
- 2 -3 pounds of chicken with skin
- 1 bottle beer - I used Yuengling
- 4 whole garlic cloves crushed - not minced
- Salt to taste - about 1 tablespoon
- 1 tablespoon of butter
- 1-2 sprigs of thyme optional
- 1/2 cup onions or shallots diced
- 1 cup sliced mushrooms
- Reserved beer marinade
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons corn starch
- ½ cup chicken broth
- 1/4 cup milk or cream
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
- Salt and pepper to season
Place the chicken into a ziploc bag. Pour in the beer and the crushed garlic with the salt.
Marinade for 8-24 hours.
When ready to cook; preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Drain the beer marinade (reserving the liquid), and heat a large skillet or oven proof pan over medium-high heat.
Add 1 tablespoon of butter to the pan; and when it starts to smoke add the chicken pieces. Sear chicken pieces on both sides until the skin is golden and crisp. Sprinkle with thyme leaves.
Place pan into the oven and continue to cook for a further 20 minutes. Turn the chicken and cook for a further 10 minutes, or until cooked through. Cook until chicken reaches an internal temp of 165 degrees.
While the chicken is in the oven, fry the onions, reserved garlic from the marinade and mushrooms in a separate hot pan with butter. When fragrant; add the reserved marinade and simmer on medium-high heat for 5 minutes.
Mix reserved beer and chicken broth to get two cups of liquid. Whisk in cornstarch until no lumps remain.
Add the beer, broth, cornstarch mixture to mushrooms and onions. Cook until thickened, stirring occasionally. When gravy is thick, stir the cooking milk or cream through along with the thyme. Season with salt to suit your tastes.
Serve with creamy mashed potatoes. Serve chicken with gravy poured over the chicken or serve gravy on the side.
Garnish with finely chopped thyme.