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This post is archived. It remains from a previous version of this site when I was still trying to figure out the best way to convey my infusion experiment results. Depending on the type of fruit/veg/meat, this recipe may be re-posted in the new updated format. Posts with the new format can be distinguished by their title, containing either “Infused Vodka” or “Infused Liqueur”. Thanks! -Scott
Why not? I’ll admit, what I really wanted to make at first was a roasted turkey flavored vodka. (This first attempt was right around Thanksgiving, and I had turkey on the brain. ) But I didn’t want to go through the trouble of cooking a whole 10 lb turkey just to get the drippings. Plus, I had no idea at the time if the results would be a win or a bust, another reason I wanted to keep the cost of this experiment at a minimum. So browsing through the local deli one day, that smell warm rotisserie chicken hit me square between the eyes, and I knew what must be done. Seasoned rotisserie chicken infused vodka, here I come…I began with 1 seasoned rotisserie chicken, still hot from the rotisserie.
When I think rotisserie chicken, my brain is recalling that mouth watering brown-skin flavor…and that’s what I wanted my final infusion to taste like. I let the chicken fully cool before cutting into it and stripping off all the fat and skin. Allowing the bird to cool first let the flavor-packed fat to gel somewhat, making it easier to separate and save. The skin and fat were separated from the meat and bones of the chicken. I left out the meat because the flavor-to-weight ratio is considerably lower than that of the skin and fat. Also, the bones might be good for making a nice stock, but the high iron content of the marrow could easily bring a metallic flavor to our infusion. After stripping the bird of its fat and skin, I then paid special attention to the wing tips (personally my favorite part) and scraped any flavor I could from them, without including the wing’s bone or marrow. Finally, be sure to collect any juice that remained in the packaging, the more you collect the better.
Weight of whole rotisserie chicken: 948g
Weight of Chicken Flavor Pieces (skin, fat, juice, and anything brown): 157g
Usable % for our infusion purposes: 16.5% (Knowing this % will let me quickly access how much infusion I can expect while at the grocery store.)
In a 32 oz mason jar, the 157g of chicken flavor pieces were combined with 384 g (16oz) High Proof Spirit. Be sure to add enough HPS to fully cover the chicken pieces. Some of the skin wanted to float, so I used a bamboo skewer to push the pieces back under the HPS. So long as everything is submerged, you can conduct this infusion on the counter. But to be safe, I kept this one in the refrigerator overnight.
Top picture, HPS and chicken flavor pieces combined. The HPS takes on a brown color quickly going to work extracting that delicious flavor. Middle picture, the infusion after sitting in the refrigerator overnight. Some fat particles have congealed and float to the top, while quite a bit more have sank to the bottom. Bottom picture, peering down into jar at the floating fats and oils. A fine mesh strainer is used to separate the big flavor pieces from the infused spirit. The pieces were pressed with a spoon against the mesh, no need to use cheese cloth with this. Weight of infused spirit = 286g, resulting in 2g more than our starting weight.
First picture below, the infused spirit after separating the meat pieces out. Next, I put the infusion into the freezer. This was more out of curiosity to see what happens (if more fat would float, settle, or any other changes took place). After sitting in the freezer for about 5 hours, some of the suspended chicken fat did settle (second picture below). To further separate this extra fat from the infused spirit, the chilled infusion was passed through a coffee filter. By pouring slowly, the fat that sank to the bottom remained attached to the jar, and save the coffee filter from getting gummed up. The whole process of coffee filtering took about 1 hour, and to help speed it along, I switched to a new coffee filter half way through. Final weight of infused spirit: 230g or 400ml. To calculate the ABV of this infusion, I will assume that the chicken skin absorbed a minimal amount of the spirit. Therefore the final infused alcohol by volume of the infusion is 80%. To achieve vodka strength, dilute the infused spirit 1:1 with filtered water. Or chicken stock….mmmmm.
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