Vino Pollo a la Brasa

This recipe uses white wine rather than beer along with a few other minor refinements that make this a truly amazing Pollo.  Use a white wine that you would not mind drinking.  A bad wine can ruin this one.  The spicing has been adjusted to enhance the subtlty of the wine.

A charcoal fire with a rotisserie is always our ideal, but you may need to improvise with what you have.  If working without a rotisserie, check out our section on indirect grilling and the beer-can method specifically.  If you are using an oven, check out or post on Pollo sans la Brasa in the Substitutions section of the site.  In this section we also offer alternatives to other hard to come by ingredients.

As with the Classic, this should be served with the usual suspects (huacatay/aji sauce, mayo, french fries, salad(?)). Don't be affraid to experiment with the marinade 'paste' if you lack certain ingredients or want to embellish certain flavors.


Instructions

Ingredients:

  • 1 (2 1/2 to 3 1/2 pound) broiler-fryer chicken
  • 1/2 tablespoon rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon huacatay (many substitues - check substitutions)
  • 1/2 tablespoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon Ground Achiote(Annato) (substitute Paprika)
  • 1 tablespoon ginger paste
  • 1 tablespoon aji (either fresh or minced fresh - check substitutions)
  • 1/4 cup White Wine
  • 2 tablespoons garlic paste
  • salt and pepper
  • Oil for the grill

Hardware:

  • Upright or Immersion Blender (or mortar and pestle)
  • Grill with rotisserie or a grill setup for indirect grilling
  • Chef's Knives
  • Grill Utensils
  • Spray water bottle for flare-ups
  • Cutting Board
  • Meat Thermometer

Condiments:

    Attila the Hen a la Brasa

  1. Step 1

    Rinse chicken well inside out, pat dry, cut off excess fat, tuck the wings

  2. Step 2

    Combine the remaining ingredients in an upright mixer (or in a bowl if using an Immersion blender)

  3. Step 3

    Pulse mixture until you have a paste. If necessary, thin the mixture with water or more wine.

  4. Step 4

    Taste it. Add more wine and salt accordingly.

  5. Step 5

    Rub the chicken with mixture inside and out, making sure you covered all parts of the chickens. Flavoring cannot naturally penetrate chicken skin. Where ever possible, it is important to seperate the skin and apply the paste directly to the meat.

  6. Step 6

    Seal them up in a large zip-top bag (or in a large bowl covered in plastic wrap) and put them in the fridge for 6 hours.

  7. Step 7

    Prepare your Grill. We of course like to use wood char rather than gas, but use what you have. In our "Alternative Methods" section, we even explore Deep Fried Pollo. But for now, we'll stick to the Brasa bro. If you lack a Grill Rotisserie, you will need to setup your grill for indirect grilling*. Be careful not to 'smoke' the chicken. We are not here to smoke anything. The best Pollo a la Brasa has a slight charcoal flavor but NOT a smokey flavor.
    *See tips below

  8. Step 8

    Maintain the pollo and the fire. It will take in a semi-open grill about 1 hour to 1 1/4 of an hour at medium heat (180 - 200 degrees F.) on an open Grill will take a little longer and temperature must be between 200 - 240 degrees F. Chicken should be about 12 inches away from fire at least. Much of this depends on your grill and your personal experience, so feel free to experiment. If you are using a rotiserrie, you may want to have the coals closer. Remove the bird from the Grill and place on a large cutting board when it has reached an internal temperature slightly over 170 degrees*.
    *See tips below

  9. Step 9

    When the bird has sat for 10 minutes, quarter the bird with a butcher knife and serve with the condiments, maybe some french fries, and who knows...maybe a salad.
    See our post on quatering chicken here



  10. Tips
    • If you lack a grill rotisserie, the "Beer Can" method of grilling chicken works great in a pinch. For details on the Beer Can method, see our post here.
    • Because your bird has been thoroughly tenderized, it can withstand the high internal temperature. It is necessary to reach this high internal temperature in order to achive Pollo Perfection.
    • If you don't have fresh Huacatay or any Huacatay at all, fret not. Run to Latin market and you will likely be in luck. If you don't have one of those either...don't worry about it. If you have a garden or grocery store near-by, you may be in business: pulverize fresh mint with corriander and a little basil.
      Alternativly, if you are so inclined, grow the stuff. Its easy and grows like a weed, Check out our post on Huacatay.