do you know what negra modelo is? if you don't, i highly advise you stop what you're doing, jump in your car, and zip over to the nearest supermarket. once there, proceed directly to the refridgerated beer aisle and pick up a 6-pack of negra modelo.
it's a dark ale imported from mexico and is EXCELLENT. smooth and rich but bright, it does a great job of picking up heavier foods. oh, and you'll need a bottle opener. this ain't no corona.
anyway, i knew i needed to get back into cooking regularly again, if not for the extra weight i've gained from my "eating out" diet the past 3 months, then for the sake of this blog and my friends who read it! so i decided to hit albertson's (not my favorite but conveniently located close to my house) and go in without a gameplan.
i started in the produce section and picked up...
including red potatoes, carrots, whole garlic cloves, and small boiling onions.
i also picked up 6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs and upon arriving at home, set about browning the chicken with a good dose of salt and pepper.
once that got going, i tossed in the veggies, seasoned heavily with salt and pepper, squeezed a lemon and threw in the rinds, and added a handful of coarsely chopped cilantro. after a quick stir, in went a half bottle of negra modelo.
clamping the lid, i took the entire pan (oven-safe) and shoved the heavy buster into a 400 degree oven for about 1 hr.
as i pulled the lid off i was greeted with a puff of white steam and this...
i also pulled out a pan of...
which i roasted alongside the pan for the last 10 minutes.
the result was a healthy, light but flavorful broth that kept the chicken and vegetables extremely moist.
a deconstructed stew of sorts, the great thing here was i could taste the natural sweetness of each ingredient, while the negra modela pulled everything together with a clean finish. what a pleasant surprise for something put together on a whim.
when i do this again, and i will, i'll add a little less lemon and bump up the seasoning a bit with more salt/pepper and maybe cumin or coriander. also, maybe experimenting with whole chicken legs, skin-on, would be interesting. i'd also add some fresh chopped cilantro right at the end to brighten up the dish a bit, color and flavor-wise. but in the meantime, i have 3 more to-go containers filled with this tasty, mexican beer chicken in my fridge for 2 lunches and a dinner.