Beer-Brined Roast Chicken
This recipe, from the chef Adrienne Cheatham of Red Rooster Harlem in New York, pairs a whole roast chicken, brined overnight in lager, with roasted potatoes, brussels sprouts, pearl onions and sage. The resulting bird is crisp-skinned, with juicy, flavorful meat.
- Serves: 4 persons
- 1cup kosher salt
- ⅔cup packed light brown sugar
- 4cloves garlic, lightly crushed
- 1leek (white and light green part), quartered
- 5sprigs thyme
- 7sprigs sage
- 2shallots, halved and peeled
- 3(12-ounce) bottles lager-style beer
- 1whole chicken (4 to 4 1/2 pounds)
- 1 ½pounds Brussels sprouts, trimmed and cut in half lengthwise
- 1 ½pounds fingerling potatoes (or other small potato), cut in half lengthwise
- 2cups whole peeled pearl onions
- 2tablespoons chopped fresh sage
- 1teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
- 3tablespoons vegetable oil
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 3to 4 sprigs sage
- 3tablespoons butter, softened
- 1(12-ounce) bottle lager-style beer
Step 1Prepare the brine: In a large pot combine 8 cups water, the salt and the sugar and bring to a simmer over high heat, stirring to help dissolve the salt and sugar. Remove from heat and add garlic, leek, thyme, sage and shallots; let cool to room temperature.
Step 2Place the chicken in a deep container large enough to hold it and the brine. Pour the cooled brine over the chicken. Pour in the 3 bottles of beer until the chicken is submerged; cover and refrigerate overnight.
Step 3Prepare the chicken and vegetables: Heat oven to 350 degrees. Combine the brussels sprouts, potatoes, onions, chopped sage and lemon zest in a large bowl. Drizzle with oil and season with salt and pepper; toss to evenly coat.
Step 4Remove the chicken from the brine and pat the skin dry with paper towels. Place about half of the vegetables in the bottom of a roasting pan or large sauté pan and set the chicken on top. Rub the butter evenly over the top of the chicken to coat. Pour the bottle of beer into the pan and arrange the sage sprigs in the pan around the chicken.
Step 5Roast the chicken for 1 hour, basting every 20 minutes with the liquid in the pan.
Step 6Increase the oven temperature to 400 degrees. Spread the remaining vegetables on a baking sheet and place on a low rack or the bottom of the oven. Cook until the chicken skin is golden brown and crisp and the vegetables are just tender and slightly charred, 20 to 30 more minutes, stirring the vegetables and basting the chicken once halfway through.
Step 7Let the chicken rest for 10 minutes before carving. Plate chicken with a mix of roasted veggies and the vegetables from the pan. Spoon the reduced cooking liquid from the pan over the top.