Recipes

Keep it clean when marinating raw meat

Honey Porter-Glazed Chicken Skewers
Honey Porter-Glazed Chicken Skewers TNS

Q: Can marinades used on raw meat and poultry be reused as a sauce or a glaze?

A: This is a tricky subject. And with the summertime bringing on more outdoor grilling, there’s more marinating going on.

Most recipes say to discard the marinade after you remove the food that was being marinated. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s www.foodsafety.gov website, marinades can be reused but only if they are boiled for five minutes to kill any potential bacteria. A safer practice is to either reserve some of the marinade before adding the meat or make an extra batch of marinade. You can use the extra as a sauce or glaze to complement what you marinate and grill.

One of the most important things to keep in mind when marinating foods is preventing cross-contamination. Anyone who knows me knows that’s one of my pet peeves. I see people dipping a brush in a sauce or marinade and brushing it on whatever they are cooking. And they’ll dip the brush (which touched raw food) back into the sauce and brush it on again. Does it burn off? Perhaps. But my best practice is drizzle it on with a spoon or use a squirt bottle.

Basic ingredients of a marinade include an acidic ingredient, an oil and seasonings. Acidic ingredients can be vinegars, juices, wine and even pop. You also can use liquids such as beer and soy sauce. For the oil, don’t waste your money on using expensive oils like olive or nut oils. Use a neutral oil like canola or vegetable and even grapeseed oil.

You can marinate meats and poultry for one or several hours or overnight. Smaller pieces or cuts of meats require less time. Larger cuts, like a roast or whole chicken, need more time. You can place meats and poultry in a marinade using a freezer-safe container and freeze them.

When marinating, plastic sealable bags are best because food is entirely covered. These also take up less room in the refrigerator or freezer. And, yes. Always marinate the food in the refrigerator or freezer, not on the counter.

In today’s recipe for Honey Porter-Glazed Chicken Skewers, the boiled and reduced marinade is used as a glaze to drizzle on the chicken skewers while they cook on the grill. Because it was boiled down, it becomes almost syrupy and adheres to the chicken. Once you remove the chicken chunks and strain the marinade, there’s not a lot of it left. It’s just enough to drizzle on the chicken. If you want some to serve on the side, make extra marinade.

The recipe is from the Olympia Entertainment Culinary Team at Joe Louis Arena. It caught my eye because of the marinade and because it was an easy recipe.

Honey porter-glazed chicken skewers

Serves: 4 / Preparation time: 20 minutes / Total time: 45 minutes (plus marinating time)

2 cloves garlic, grated with a microplane, minced or pressed

1/3 cup honey

1/2 cup porter or stout beer

1 teaspoon red pepper flakes or to taste

1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/4 cup soy sauce

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

6 boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into cubes

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/4 cup chopped shallots (about 1 medium shallot)

Wooden skewers soaked in water for 30 minutes

Oil for the grill

Chopped cilantro for garnish (optional)

In a small bowl whisk together the garlic, honey, porter, red pepper flakes, mustard, soy sauce and pepper. Add the chicken cubes, refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight.

Remove the chicken from marinade to a plate or bowl. Reserve the marinade, straining through a sieve. Thread the chicken through wooden skewers. Set aside.

In a saucepan set over medium high heat, add the olive oil and shallots. Saute until shallots have softened, about 5 minutes. Add marinade and boil, stirring frequently, until reduced and thickened, about 8 minutes.

Preheat grill to medium high. Brush the grates lightly with oil. Drizzle the chicken skewers with some of the glaze. Place the chicken skewers on the grill. Cook about 10 to 12 minutes or until thoroughly cooked through, drizzling with additional glaze every 2-4 minutes.

Remove from the grill and sprinkle with chopped cilantro before serving.

Cook’s note: To cook in the oven. Preheat the oven to 400. Place chicken on a baking sheet covered with aluminum foil. Brush liberally with glaze. Roast at 400 for 30-40 minutes, brushing with glaze every 8-10 minutes until cooked through.

From Olympia Entertainment Culinary Team at Joe Louis Arena, Detroit. Tested by Susan Selasky for the Free Press Test Kitchen. Nutrition information not available.

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