Thursday, February 21, 2013

Coffee-Cola Brined Chicken

So, if you read my last post, you know how I acquired 3 kg of chicken drums...3 kg of freakishly large chicken drums.  Yup, not my favorite choice if we are singling out chicken parts.  Sure, I like 1 or 2 mixed into my cluck bucket o' chicken, but this many?  (yikes)

I was hoping a brine would tenderize them, and I was looking for one with a lot of pizazz and flavor.  I found a recipe on & I ended up adding a small "sleek" can of cola to this.  Look at that cute little 100 calorie can!

In my largest bowl, I mixed up my coffee brine, submerged the chicken in it, and poured the cola over top.  To keep the chicken submerged, I tightly wrapped an inverted bowl to weigh everything down.  This sat in the fridge for about 4 hours.

I let the chicken sit on the counter while I preheated the oven and prepped the broiler pan.  I then rinsed and lined these bad boys up to broil, 10 minutes on each side, then bake until finished, still flipping every 10 minutes.

I was pleasantly surprised with them.  You could definitely taste the coffee, a hint of sweet, a hint cinnamon, coupled with a little bit of heat from the chili flakes and chili powder.

I would make this brine again...I think I would add a little liquid smoke, and/or some smoked sweet paprika next time.  I'll keep you posted.

Printable Recipe
Coffee-Cola Brined Chicken Drumsticks, slightly adapted from

For the brine:
2 cups strong brewed coffee
1 222ml can of cola (about 8oz)
1/4 cup salt
2 TBS brown sugar
2 TBS chili powder
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 cinnamon stick
1 cup water, optional if needed to cover meat

Mix above ingredients in a large bowl.

For the chicken:
4-5 pounds of chicken drumsticks (this makes enough brine for about 5 pounds)

Add chicken to brine, turn to coat.  Weigh down the chicken with a plate or inverted bowl, cover with plastic, refrigerate for 2- 4 hours.  When finished marinating, set your oven rack 6" from broiler, and preheat broiler to high.  Line a broiler pan with tin foil (I used a cooling rack set inside a cookie sheet), give the chicken a quick rinse (I did this,optional) and line up in a single layer prepared pan.  Broil 10 minutes on each side (20 minutes total), then bake at 350 positioned in the middle of the oven until fully cooked, flipping every 10 minutes (this will avoid one side getting soggy).

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