With summer in full swing, I find myself looking for more things that I can make on the grill outside. Not only does it make it less hot inside the house, but there is truly something magical that happens to food when exposed to the gentle caress of a nice open flame of a grill…
One of the first things that I ever made on my own grill when I got my own place were these beer brats. Granted, the grilling part sort of came as an afterthought during the inaugural preparation of these beauties, but after countless brats being made and consumed by myself, my family, my friends, and my adoring fans (you know who you are!), I can safely say that we have perfected the technique for these brats.
Now, I know that most of you will say that there are beer brats already available in your supermarkets that don’t require any more effort than unwrapping it from the packaging and throwing it onto the grill. And truthfully, you’re right, BUT (and you knew there was going to be a but!) those brats don’t fully bring the beer flavor forth. Those are merely regular bratwurst with a small extra smattering of seasoning so minuscule, you can miss it if you blink!
I usually like to start with plain Johnsonville bratwurst and go from there. I usually don’t endorse a specific brand for most things, but in this particular case, I have to stress that you really should get Johnsonville brats and not any other brand. I’ve tried others and they just don’t hold up to the task at hand. Go Johnsonville or go home.
This recipe is easily adaptable to feed a few people or a small army as I’ve done. It’s usually easiest if you have one person manning the boil while another (yes, men of the house, this means YOU) handles the grilling part. The first phase of the preparation infuses the beer brat with beer and gives it its beautiful color. The second phase caramelizes the sugars left over from the beer and gives the outside of the brat a nice char that any hotdog would enjy. The end result is a beer brat that is succulent, flavorful, and a sure fire hit for any bbq get together. Paired up with good rolls, some sauerkraut, and a good cold beer, you’ve got yourself a fine slice of summer right here!
As envisioned by TastyDesu
1 package Johnsonville Original Bratwurst (5 brats)
1 teaspoon minced dried onion
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon garlic powder
2 12oz cans of your favorite beer (I usually use a lager)
Hot dog rolls
Fresh minced onion
Ketchup, mustard, bbq sauce
Place brats, minced onion, red pepper, and garlic powder in a frying pan and pour in beer. Bring to a boil and then lower heat to a rolling simmer. Simmer until all beer has evaporated, about 20 minutes depending on how high your heat is.
After beer has evaporated, keep heat on and start pan frying the brats. You will want to watch for when the pan starts to look really dry and browned on the bottom. Add in about 3 tablespoons of water and stand back. The pan will sizzle up. Move the brats around and deglaze the pan, making sure to kick up any of the browned bits on the bottom into the sizzling water. When all this water has evaporated, turn the brats over and repeat with another 3 tablespoons of water. You will notice the brats taking on a beautiful brown caramel color.
Remove brats after the 2nd deglazing has almost all evaporated. Grill over medium heat for about 2 minutes a side to further caramelize the sugars from the beer and give the brats a slight char. Remove and serve with your favorite accompaniments and condiments.