By Richard Thomas
Late last month, our Cooking With Whiskey beat brought a feature on the virtues of using bourbon as an ingredient for cooking out on the 4th of July, along with some suggestions on how to do it from our inventory of recipe plus a pair of well-known barbecue chefs. There is still plenty of summer left, though, and Labor Day is still out there. So here is another barbecuing with whiskey recipe that calls on a second sweet staple of the South: peaches.
I’ve written this recipe up so you can do it in a regular kitchen, on the stove top and in the oven. It’s now mid-summer and it’s pretty hot out there, and regular kitchen instructions mean you can use the recipe all year around. However, if you want to transfer this to cooking outdoors, substitute the grill for the stove top and the smoker for the oven.
Cut-up whole chicken (or whatever chicken parts you wish to use)
One diced, medium sized yellow onion
Two shots (3 oz) Bourbon or Tennessee Whiskey
Mild barbecue sauce
Two diced cloves of garlic.
I suggest using a sweet, soft bourbon or a smooth Tennessee whiskey here, so as to best play up the sweetness of the peach jam. Maker’s Mark, Rebel Yell or George Dickel No. 8 would all be good choices. A mild as opposed to a spicy or smoky barbecue sauce is recommended for the same reason.
Pre-heat your oven to 350 F. Coat the bottom of an oven-ready pot with olive oil, add a few globs of butter, and place on the stove top on medium-low. Melt the butter and tilt the pot around to mix it with the olive oil.
Turn up to medium high, put the chicken in and brown it on both sides. Remove the chicken and place that on a plate for later. Now add the diced onions and cook them for a few minutes. Pour the whiskey in, and allow that to reduce for a couple of minutes before adding the garlic, barbecue sauce, peach jam, and Worcestershire sauce. How much barbecue sauce and peach jam to use depends on how much sauce you want, but use the pair in the proportions of 1 measure of peach jam for every 2 measures of barbecue sauce. A few squirts from the Worcestershire bottle will do for that ingredient.
Stir the ingredients together, and once mixed remove the pot from the stove burner. Put the chicken back in the pot, cover thoroughly with sauce, and the put the lid on the pot. Put the pot in the oven for 1 1/2 hours.