Daily Archives: May 31, 2012

Pork braised in Guinness Stout

Mrs J took a small pork butt from the freezer yesterday to thaw overnight.  Neither of us had a particular recipe in mind and it could have gone in several different ways but I wanted to experiment a bit.It started the same way as past pork roasts with the insertion of garlic cloves into slits cut in the pork.  I rolled the meat in a mix of ancho powder, kosher salt, and black pepper.  I wasn’t sure yet whether to roast it on a rack or to add liquid and braise it.  Remembering a stash of beer in the cupboard was enough to make up my mind.  I opened a 12 ounce Guinness and poured that into the pan around the pork, then covered the pan with foil and set it to slow cooking in a 250-ish oven while I puttered around in the shop.  After 4 or 5 hours I peeked inside, it looked done but the liquid wanted reducing.  I transferred everything into a 12″ cast iron skillet and used a good steel spatula to chop the meat up.  I added some coarse chopped onion and covered the skillet and let it simmer for a while, another hour or so.  Removing the lid, I upped the heat until most of the liquids had evaporated.Looked good, I announced supper and built some sandwiches.  The oil was hot in the deep fryer so I dropped a batch of shoestrings in and brought the slaw out of the fridge.I had a new jar of giardiniera to try out, and these sandwiches were just the thing for it.  The jar was labeled hot so I didn’t bother to put any on Mrs J’s.The stuff worked well for me, too hot for the Missus, but it really wasn’t something extraordinarily hot.  I liked it.I made a small batch of slaw earlier and included just a bit too much fresh jalapeno for Mrs J, she left her portion on the plate.  It’s hard to calibrate the heat sometimes.

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Thursday Recipe Exchange: Grilled Chicken

Photo by JeffreyW

I had a request to do some grilling and picnic recipes for the next few weeks (thanks Yutsano). We’ll traverse the table: meats, vegetables, side dishes and desserts. By July 4th we should be covered.

Tonight we’ll start with grilling chicken. I have a stockpile of marinade and grilling recipes for chicken breasts. I may be in the minority, but when it comes to many chicken dishes, including bbq and fried chicken, I prefer thighs. They have more flavor and are moister. The introduction of boneless thighs was like a culinary miracle as far as I was concerned.

When I am using marinades, though, I actually prefer boneless breasts. Similar to pork loin, they take on whatever flavors are introduced and cook up quickly. When using a marinade, I think their blandness proves more of an asset than a deficit; they are kind of like a blank canvas for introducing flavors.

And for busy weeknights, nothing is quicker and easier than pulling marinated chicken breasts out of the refrigerator, doing a quick stir-fry or grilling them and serving with rice and a salad. I have three recipes to get us started:

Cranberry Grilled Chicken (recipe here) is one of my favorites and anyone who has read this blog, knows I LOVE cranberries.

And Sunrise Chicken (recipe here) is a great citrus based marinade.

Tonight’s feature recipe is a marinade that is meant for grilling. Grilling gives the marinated breasts a nice crust. It can also be used on pork loin or boneless pork chops, though I prefer apple cider or cranberry juice to the grape juice in that case.

So what do you look forward to the most at a picnic? What’s your favorite thing to grill?

Fruit Juice Marinated Chicken Breasts

  • 4 chicken boneless breasts
  • ½ cup grape or cranberry juice
  • ½ cup soy sauce
  • ½ cup wine
  • 2 tsp crushed garlic

zip lock bag or sealed container

Add all ingredients into zip lock bag and thoroughly coat & let marinate overnight. Grill 15 minutes each side, 165 degrees internal temp.

When grilling, to avoid drying chicken out, sear on each side (about 5 minutes each side), cook 5 additional minutes for each side, baste with marinade if desired, then move away from high heat for rest of the cooking time. The thickness of the chicken breasts makes a difference here, so adjust accordingly.

You’ re on your own tonight. I’ve been asked to film a drumming on Sunday and tonight is going to be a trial run. Should be fun.

Grilled Sunrise Chicken

Grilling season is here, so tonight’s recipe exchange is all about chicken marinades. This is a great citrus flavored marinade that goes great with rice or coucous.

Sunrise Chicken

  • 4 boneless chicken breasts
  • ½ cup lemon juice
  • ½ cup lime juice
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup orange juice
  • 1 tbsp crushed garlic
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp of black pepper

zip lock bag or sealed container

Add all ingredients into zip lock bag, thoroughly coat  and let marinate 1 hour, flipping at least once. Grill 15 minutes each side, 165 degrees F internal temp.

When grilling, to avoid drying chicken out, sear on each side (about 5 minutes each side), cook 5 additional minutes for each side, baste with marinade if desired, then move away from high heat for rest of the cooking time. The thickness of the chicken breasts makes a difference here, so adjust accordingly

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