More often than not, we advise people to do the bare minimum to meat purchased at our shops. Salt and pepper typically does the trick and enhances the flavor of the meat. But, sometimes you’ve just got to mix it up, and we’ve got a carefully chosen selection of marinade and sauces that do the trick.
Personally, I’m not great at planning my meals more than a few hours in advance, so marinades can be a tricky proposition. By the time you leave work, go to the store, go back to the store for some essential item you forgot, make the marinade, and get the meat in, it’s sometimes too late to even think about eating it that day. Bummer. Luckily, the shops have a little trick that can shorten the process considerably- The vacuum sealer!
For my first foray into vacuum marinating meat, I tried Kentucky-aki from Bourbon Barrel Foods. Bourbon Barrel foods makes a variety of sauces from local, non-GMO ingredient, that are aged in Woodford Reserve Barrels. Their founder, a Louisville native named Matt, started with home-brewing soy sauce, and slowly expanded to a larger range of products. Kentucky-aki has all of the good stuff I would use for a homemade marinade: soy sauce, vinegar, ginger, garlic, and bourbon. So, I skipped the trouble, and asked Aaron to toss some marinade in with a few Jolly Barnyard wings and vacuum seal it.
I was told that one hour would be adequate, but that more time would be ideal. I only gave it two hours before cutting up a pile of vegetables and throwing it all in the oven.
After 30 minutes of roasting, I made sure the fattiest parts of the wings were facing up, and cranked up the broiler for five minutes to get a nice caramel crust. Meanwhile, I finished the rice, and reduce a little more Kentucky-aki to drizzle on top.
From the moment I decided to make dinner, to the moment it was on the table, fewer than three hours had passed. The chicken tasted like it had bathed in umami goodness overnight, and I got to avoid the expense of buying all the ingredients for a marinade, the mess of combining them, and the patiences needed to walk away from such a fragrant dish.
Lucky for you, this wasn’t some employee perk. You can ask the counter staff at either Porter Road Butcher location to vacuum seal your meat with any of the marinades, sauces, or dry rubs that we carry. There are countless combinations waiting to be tried.