Patriots Buffet Table – Dec 23rd Patriots vs. Dolphins
BSMW Kitchen Staff

This week the Patriots are taking on the Dolphins. All I know about Miami came from watching Miami Vice and playing Grand Theft Auto: Vice City.

All I know about Dolphins came from the Simpsons episode where the Dolphins turned evil and took over the world. Dammit Lenny, alcohol and nightswimming do not mix. You found out the hard way that dolphins are not the clowns of the sea. Well the Dolphins are not the clowns of the NFL, thats the Jets.

The Patriots won’t confuse the two, so the only thing Miami has over us this week is their weather. We’ll be looking towards their tropical climate and Cuban influences on the Buffet Table.

Cuban wings (serves 4)
2 pounds chicken wings
1/2 cup dark spiced rum
1 cup orange juice
12 ounces IPA
1 onion diced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 teaspoon crushed coriander
1 teaspoon crushed cumin
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, If you have them substitute 1 large dried Poblano chopped
1 teaspoon salt

Combine all ingredients except chicken in a large mixing bowl. Pour the marinade into a large ziplock bag. Add the chicken and push out all of the air you can before sealing. Move the chicken around inside the bag so the marinade equally covers it all.

Place the bag into a second bag, or a deep dish to contain spills and place in the fridge. Marinate the chicken at least 1 hour, 4 hours if possible.

Lay out the chicken wings on the grill. You want to be sure the meat at the joints is cooked and the juices run clear. This will depend on the heat of your grill and the size of the wings. Plan on at least 4 minutes per side for small wings, up to 7 minutes per side for large ones. If you’re going for large drumsticks instead of wings, those can take up to 45 minutes to cook through.

If you have a side burner, you can pour the marinade from the bag into a pot. Boil this for 15 minutes and you can then brush it over the chicken as it cooks on the grill.

We used Chicken Wings up above. If you’d prefer boneless chicken, either marinate chicken breasts whole, or cut into 1″ cubes. Marinate and put onto skewers for chicken kabobs. You’ll only need 1.5 pounds of chicken breast.

Time for a drink!
Even I have to admit there are drinks besides beer. One of those is the rum and coke. I won’t give instructions for this simple cocktail, but you owe it to yourself to try it with Sailor Jerry’s Spiced Navy Rum.

This rum is far better than any Captain Morgan or Bacardi – think of those as the Dolphins and Sailor Jerry as the Patriots. Eat some of the Cuban wings with a glass of this rum and coke and try to pretend you are in the tropics instead of New England in late December.

When it comes to beer, this week we’re going with the flagship of the American craft beer industry, India Pale Ale. India Pale Ale was brewed to stay stable during the long hot voyage from England to India. Normal beers would go stale or sour, but the higher alcohol level and higher amount of hops in IPA preserved it during the cruise.

In England the course of World Wars and changing consumer tastes have left IPA a shell of it’s former self. American brewers restored this beer style to it’s former glory, and have split it into English style IPA, American Style, Double or Imperial IPA, and even now Triple IPA. They’ve inspired some British brewers to make real IPAs again. Belgian brewers have gotten into the act combining the IPA with a Belgian triple to make Belgian IPA.

Any of the IPA types would match up with our wings, but the American style will be the best. IPAs are a good match for spicy food, after all they were first drank with Indian cuisine. They have the alcohol, crispness, and carbonation to cut through heavy, strong and spicy flavors. American IPAs have the additional benefit of citrusy American hops. An American IPA will not only be able to stand up to a strong spicy dish, but their citrus flavors will meld with the citrus used in the chicken marinade.

There are no breweries in Miami. There are no breweries in Florida that distribute to New England. So we’re in a true free agent week, free to pick the best of the best. Just leave some room, the ’72 Dolphins have a lot of champagne they won’t be drinking, we may have to down that in a month.

My pick is Smuttynose IPA, a citrusy beer of wonder packed with lipsmacking Simcoe, Santiam and Amarillo hops. I would watch a third game between the Jets and Dolphins if I got a 6 pack of this beer for watching. Dogfish Head 60 minute IPA is another good example. Their 90 minute IPA is in more of the Double/Imperial style and too strong for this dish. Sierra Nevada has their Celebration Ale out this time of year. Celebration Ale was one of the first American IPAs and I look forward to its release every winter. If you bought the Clipper City mixpack mentioned in the Patriots versus Redskins Buffet Table you’ve already tried Heavy Seas Loose Cannon Hop3 Ale. Thomas Hooker from Bloomfield,CT offers up Hop Meadow IPA.

The Tap in Haverhill, MA has their Leatherlips IPA available for sale in bottles in liquor stores, and also on tap at the brewpub. New England Brewing in Woodbridge, Ct presents a rarity, their Sea Hag IPA is sold in cans.

IPA is another style that is popular at brewpubs, almost all keep one on tap. Willimantic Brewing in Willimantic,CT brews many and keeps about 3 on at a time. Your local will most likely have one on tap as well.