Thursday, October 20, 2011

Orange Soda Chicken Experiment

I was talking to a friend about cooking a couple days ago when I remembered this recipe.  Unfortunately, no written record exists anywhere.  Earlier this evening, I attempted to reassemble the recipe from memories partially shrouded in an alcoholic haze.

First, the ingredients:
A pound of chicken.

12 ounces of orange soda.  I used one and a half of these cute little bastards.  I'm not sure if the Deadwood complete series boxed set visible behind them on my kitchen table is necessary but it couldn't hurt.

A hot sauce of your choice.

A package of stir fry vegetables.  You may need more than one.

An alcoholic beverage of your choice to drink while you're cooking.  Smithwick's is preferred but I suppose other beers or mixed drinks would work.  I suppose you could attempt it without having a tipple at the same time but it's not recommended.

First, you're going to want to dump your orange soda into a pan, then add a small dollop of your hot sauce.  Don't add a shitload or it will be to hot to eat once the mixture cooks down.  Note that dollop and shitload are highly scientific units of measurement.

Turn up the heat and start cutting your chicken into bite-sized chunks.  The basic premise of this recipe is to get the mixture of orange soda and hot sauce boiling and throw the chicken in.  By the time you're finished, hopefullly, the chicken will be permeated with a sweet and spicy taste and also have a nice sweet and spicy glaze on the outside.

I was about two beers deep into my six pack at this point so time became rather flexible.  Cook the chicken in the mixture until the mixture has been greatly reduced.  You'll want to leave a little of the sauce at the bottom of the pan.  Once your chicken is cooked, throw in your veggies and put the lid on and let the veggies steam in the citric mist you've been creating.

The success or failure of this process hinges on a few factors:

  1. You're going to want enough vegetables to make it worthwhile.  One bag wasn't quite enough.
  2. You want a hot sauce that has some bite to it.  The East Asian Tabasco I picked didn't really have the heat that I was looking for.  Still, it's a nice tasting sauce.
  3. Don't use too much soda!  This is the most important factor when attempting this.  Too much and the shit will never cook down enough.  In retrospect, 8 ounces probably would have been plenty.

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