If you have ever had chicken cooked in beer you will know that beer imparts an amazing flavour to the meat. This one-pot dish beer chicken is a variation of the one traditional version. It goes very well with rice or slices of lightly buttered baguette (French loaf). As with most one-pot dishes, you can double the recipe, provided your pot is big enough to take the load. Add about 15 minutes at the most onto the cooking time.
- 3 heaped tsp chicken stock powder or 2 cubes
- 2 tsp garam masala
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 2 bottles beer (I usually use Windhoek Lager)
- 1 whole chicken or 8 thighs
- 4 medium potatoes, peeled and quartered
- 3 large onions, peeled and quartered
- 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2 sprigs of fresh thyme, chopped
- salt, freshly ground black pepper and brown sugar to taste
- 1 cup fresh cream
Dissolve the chicken stock powder, garam masala and ground cumin in 2 cups (500ml) beer. Drink the rest of the beer while cooking!
Place the chicken in a potjie or stockpot. Arrange the potatoes and onions around it and pour over the beer stock. Sprinkle over the pepper and thyme.
Simmer on medium-low heat, or cook in the oven at 180ºC, for about 1 hour.
After about an hour, increase the heat a little and taste the sauce. Season with salt and pepper if needs be, or even a little brown sugar if you prefer a sweeter dish. Now add three-quarters of the cream and stir gently for 10 minutes. Taste the sauce again and decide if you need more cream (if it is too thin or too salty, you will need to add more).
Simmer for another 15 minutes on medium-low heat until the sauce thickens enough to serve.
Cook's tip: Keep the sauce, vegetables and remaining deboned meat to use as a pie filling the next day. You can make individual pies and freeze them.