I was going to do it. I had every intention. I was going to take a chicken, pull its skin off like a disgusting, slimy sweater and then refashion the whole thing into something that people have said is delicious.
I’ll be honest though, I wasn’t really looking forward to it. For one, the galatine looks like old food (as in not modern) and something I wasn’t really interested in. Secondly it made a lot. I mean the whole idea of this month’s Charcutepalooza challenge was to stretch a small amount of food into an amount to feed a group. I just didn’t want to make a bunch of food that would eventually go to waste and I just didn’t have enough free time this month to throw together a dinner party.
Then came the thing that made the whole point mute. I got sick. So sick. Nothing sounded good to eat and I had no energy for cooking.
Finally with two days to spare, I felt up to cooking, but, I still wasn’t up to full Jennifer strength. I needed my challenge to be easily completed in just a few hours. Galatine out. Rillettes in.
I’ve made rillettes before (I made the fantastic recipe from the Pork and Sons cookbook last month as part of my meal) but I’ve always made it with pork. I wanted to try something new so I thought I would use chicken. Then I started thinking about flavorings. I love the tangy flavor of buffalo wings and I thought that would be in interesting direction to take. Here’s the ingredients.
To start, I combined all the ingredients except for the chicken and the vinegar in a saucepan and heated it until the lard had melted. Then I added the chicken and brought the pot to a low simmer. I stirred it a couple of times, but there was enough liquid in the pot that I didn’t have to worry about it too much.
After an hour I added the vinegar and let it cook for another 45 minutes or so until the chicken was falling apart. Then, using a slotted spoon, I moved all the meat to the bowl of my stand mixer.
Using the paddle attachment I ran the mixer for about a minute until the meat had broken apart. I tested for flavor and consistency and added a few spoonfuls of the cooking liquid and a splash more of vinegar.
Then I packed the meat into 3 half-pint jars.
While I packed the jars, the cooking liquid separated into layers with the fat on top, so I was able to easily spoon a layer of fat top each of the packed jars.
I stashed the jars in the fridge so the fat could re-solidify and the flavors could marry.
Since buffalo wings are often served with blue cheese dressing, I thought that a hunk of good blue cheese, along with some crusty bread and a few celery sticks would be the perfect accompaniments.
The rillettes made a delightful dinner. The “buffalo wing” flavor was subtle, but delicious. I could have used a little more heat (and maybe a little more tang) but overall, this recipe is a winner.
- 5 ounces pork fat or lard
- ½ Cup Frank’s Original Red Hot Sauce
- ½ Cup Water
- 1 onion, diced
- ¼ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- ½ teaspoon Tabasco or other hot sauce
- 1 Pinch cayenne
- 1 Clove garlic, minced
- 1½ Pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces, large veins removed.
- 1 Tablespoon white vinegar
- Combine all the ingredients, except for the chicken and white vinegar, in a saucepan and heat gently until the fat has melted. Add the chicken and cook over very low heat, stirring often for 1 hour. Add the vinegar to the pan and continue to cook until the meat shreds easily, about another hour.
- Using a slotted spoon, transfer the meat to the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the paddle attachment, mix at low speed until the meat breaks into pieces. Adjust consistency by adding a few spoonfuls of the cooking liquid to the bowl (consistency should be spreadable, not runny or dry). Test for seasoning and add more salt, hot sauce or vinegar as needed.
- Pack the meat into a suitable jar or ramekin. Allow the cooking liquid to separate and spoon fat over the top of the meat to cover and create a seal.
- Serve with crusty bread, celery sticks and good blue cheese.