So. You wanna grill some chicken, or mebbe some nice pork chops, but, how to grill the suckers so they are tender and flavorful, not just dried out husks of crunchy grill flavor?
Now, there are any number of marinade options, from stoopidly simple (a bottle of Italian dressing) on up; but this marinade, with all the spices and seasonings and hot sauce and Sherry Peppers and buttermilk and beer is one of our top faves!
And, it requires no special ingredients! No buttermilk on hand? No problem! Simply add one tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice to a measuring cup, then stir in milk (I prefer whole milk, but you do you) to measure one cup. Stir and let rest for five minutes or so, and you now have buttermilk.
Note: need more than one cup? Start with a larger measuring cup, then use, for example, two tablespoons of white vinegar or lemon juice before stirring in milk to measure two cups; which is what I used here for six chicken drumsticks and five thighs.
•2 cups buttermilk (see above)
•24 oz beer
•3/4 cup veggie oil
•3 or 4 fresh basil leaves
•1 tbsp Cajun Power Spicy Garlic Pepper Sauce – or your fave hot sauce, to taste
•2 tbsp Sherry Peppers Sauce*
•1 tsp garlic powder
•1/2 tsp Aleppo pepper
•1/2 tsp dried parsley
•Black pepper, to taste
*No Sherry Peppers Sauce? No Problem! Simply add a bit of decent sherry (none of that “cooking” stuff) and a dash or three of your fave hot sauce, to taste.
Whisk all of the ingredients together – the beer added to the buttermilk will give you an extra frothy marinade, that is fine – and pour over chicken or pork chops in a gallon-sized zipper bag.
Place the bag in a rimmed plate or dish – for to catch any possible drippage – and stash in the fridge for a few hours or – always more better – overnight – turning the bag over whenever you think to do it.
Pull the chicken (or chops) out of the fridge about an hour before you plan start grilling to bring them up to room temperature.
Grill as you will. I do not do the actual grilling, I leave that to my husband; but he removes them from the marinade (discard the marinade), arranges them over moderate direct heat and grills, turning every few minutes, until the chicken or chops are done according to our instants read thermometer: 165º for chicken, 145º for pork.
The chicken or chops will be tender, tasty, and delicious with just the buttermilk beer marinade, but this time, we brushed on some Smoky Diana Sauce on while grilling.
I made and canned a batch of nine half-pints a week or so ago (one half pint was perfect for this amount of chicken), but if you are looking for a single use recipe, here you go:
Smoky Diana Sauce:
•1 cup canned tomato puree
•1 cup sugar
•3/4 cup white vinegar
•1 tbsp Dijon mustard
•5 tsp liquid smoke
•1/4 cup molasses
•3/4 tsp salt
•1 tsp garlic powder
•1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
•1/2 tsp onion powder
•1/2 tsp paprika
•1/4 tsp chili powder
•1/4 tsp Turmeric
•1/4 tsp Cayenne
•1/4 tsp pepper
•1/4 tsp Aleppo pepper
Whisk the sauce ingredients together in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil.
Reduce the heat and simmer for five minutes, then set the sauce aside to cool before using.
Remove your cooked chicken or chops from the grill, cover loosely with foil, and let rest for five minutes or so before serving.
Aaah. Tender and flavorful, as promised.