We were recently chatting with the guys at Phipps PR about the versatility of using beer in home-cooking, something we’ve used on many occasions. We’re really enjoying cooking with chicken thighs at the minute as they flavoursome and moist and lend themselves perfectly to so many dishes. We recently cooked some BBQ glazed chicken thighs which involved us cooking the chicken in the actual glaze.
This time we wanted to try something a little different and add a different element to the glaze chicken so we decided to fry the chicken and make a tasty glaze using Estrella beer. We also wanted to add a sweet but salty element to the dish and so we decided to make a maple, candied pancetta which topped the chicken thighs. Find out how we did all this and let us know your thoughts below.
For the sticky beer glaze:
- 1/2 small white onion, finely diced
- 1 bottle Estrella beer
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 tbsp demerara sugar
- 1 garlic clove, crushed or finely chopped
- 1/2 red chilli (or 1 tsp chilli paste)
- Salt and pepper for seasoning
For the chicken:
- 8 chicken thighs (boneless)
- 4 heaped tbsp plain flour
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper
- Light sunflower oil for frying
- Salt and pepper for seasoning
For the maple pancetta:
- 1 tbsp maple syrup
- 70g pancetta, cubed
- Light olive oil for frying
Prep time – 10 – 15 minutes
Cooking time – 30 minutes
Serves 2 – 3 people
1. Begin to make the beer glaze
Gently fry the chopped onion in a pan over a medium heat until soft and golden. Add the chopped garlic and fry for a further minute before adding the remaining ingredients for the glaze. Bring to the boil and reduce the heat and simmer for 10 – 15 minutes or until reduced and sticky. While the sauce is reducing, prepare your chicken. Get your frying pan ready in advance of cooking the chicken by pre-heating to 180C.
We used Estrella beer to help make our glaze but other lagers will work just as well in creating the glaze. Try sticking to a beer that you enjoy the taste of.
2. Prepare your chicken thighs
In a bowl, mix together the flour, cayenne, salt and pepper. Wash and dry your chicken cutting of any sinew. Cut each thigh in half and then add your chicken to the bowl with the flour mix. Gently toss until all the chicken has been thoroughly coated. Once your oil is at temperature it is time to cook. Carefully add the chicken thighs to the fryer and cook for 5 – 7 minutes until golden.
For best results cook the chicken in batches ensuring it is cooked all the way through before serving. Once the chicken has been cooked, place it onto some kitchen paper to drain.
3. Make your crispy maple pancetta
While your chicken is frying and sauce continuing to reduce, put your pancetta in a pan with a splash of oil over a medium heat. Fry the pancetta until it is golden and drizzle the maple syrup over the top, continuing to fry for another minute or two until sticky. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
4. Assemble to sticky beer chicken thighs
Place the chicken thighs into a serving bowl and pour the reduced beer glaze over the top of the chicken. The glaze should be nice and sticky at this stage. Lightly toss the chicken and serve with the pancetta sprinkled on top.
While these sticky chicken thighs are a great party snack and perfect to enjoy on their own, we enjoyed ours with a simple rocket salad and some garlic pitta bread.