Vortex IPA Slow Cooker Beer Can Chicken

                                                                                                                   By Zetty McKay/Brewery Wife

With school back in session and fall in the air, quick and comforting meals are a must. So, I thought I would share a favorite family recipe for Vortex IPA Slow Cooker Beer Can Chicken.  It has the same flavorful, juicy, fall-off-the-bone characteristics as traditional beer can chicken; however, this is a simple weeknight supper.  With very little prep work, which may include drinking some beer the night before, set your slow cooker on low and come home to a succulent dinner that’s great for family, and impressive and intriguing enough for entertaining.

Whole Chicken (4 pounds)
Potatoes (12 small red/yellow or equivalent)
Onions (1 large or several small)
1 Cup Vortex IPA This equals 8 ounces, which is half of a pint-sized can. You may want to drink half of a can the night before making the chicken, reserving enough for your recipe in the morning.

Tablespoon Salt
Teaspoon Black Pepper
Tablespoon Paprika
Tablespoon Brown Sugar
Remove giblets, rinse chicken, and pat dry. Mix dry rub in a small dish and then rub it all over the chicken.

Chop onions, into large chunks and cover the bottom of your slow cooker with them.

Lay the chicken on top of the onions, breast down, and back facing up. Arrange as many potatoes as the cooker can hold, with the lid still fitting securely.  I left mine whole as they were smaller, but you may want to cut larger ones in half.

Finally pour your Vortex into the cooker alongside the chicken, as to not wash away the dry rub. Cover, set heat to low, and let cook. Mine cooked for 6 ½ hours; however, I've had good results at 8 hours as well.

Remove potatoes, chicken, and onions from slow cooker and arrange on a platter. The meat should be falling off the bone, and therefore is very easy to “carve”, just using your hands.

If you’ve had an especially demanding day, or company coming over, you may want to make some Vortex gravy. Just mix a few Tablespoons of corn starch with a little cold water in a small dish until smooth, and whisk it into the juices in the slow cooker. Turn the heat up to high, cover, and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Then, pour over your platter, or let individuals serve their own.
I served this feast with a fresh loaf of Pan Rustique from our brewery neighbor, the Blue Scorcher Bakery, fresh green beans, and cans of Fort George Vortex IPA--a perfect pairing with this meal.

By the way, we really enjoy our Vortex out of  big red wine goblets; the vessel is good for channeling aromatics, allows for enhanced hop flavors to come out as it warms in your hand, and it makes an elegant presentation.

A good friend, Susie, came over for dinner, and we couldn’t stop eating, the food was so good. We were super full, but she happens to be one of the best pie-makers in the world, so we forced ourselves to top off our meal with some blackberry pie, that was still warm from the oven.  It was totally worth relatively little effort for such a great meal.  I can't wait for you to try it too!

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