Cooking With Mik

Mik Halse – man, myth, industry legend. (Also now to be referred to as ‘Sir Mik of Sealand’).

Each week (ish), Mik will create a new recipe with a Bandwagon Beverages product, for you to cook at home, in your venue, or anywhere you please.


‘Son of a Spicy Gun Fried Chicken’ 

Serves 2-4 depending on who’s eating.

Prep Time: 10 minutes + marinating time (8-24 hours) 

Cook Time: 30 minutes max.



4 boneless skinless chicken thighs

1 tbs salt

¾ cups buttermilk

1/2 can of Son of a Gun IPA 

2 tsp sriracha or your favourite hot sauce


2 cups flour

2 tbs brown sugar

2 tsp chili powder

1 tsp onion powder

1 tsp garlic powder

½ tsp salt

½ tsp pepper

½ tsp cayenne pepper


Whatever oil you use for frying – don’t use the expensive E.V.O. but damned if I don’t want to try this in duck fat… I did it in Canola oil.. don’t judge me


Arrange the chicken in an even layer in a large tub.

Sprinkle with  salt.

In a small bowl whisk together the buttermilk, beer and hot sauce, pour evenly over the chicken, cover and refrigerate for 8 to 24 hours.

In a medium sized bowl stir together the flour, brown sugar, chili powder, onion powder, salt, pepper, and cayenne.

Remove the chicken pieces, dredge in the flour mixture then gently re-dip in the marinade and re-coat with the flour mixture (double coating gives you a crispier chicken), set on a wire rack.

Allow the coated chicken to sit at room temperature for 10 to 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 150ish.

Add the oil to a large pot until about 15 cm’s deep, unless you have a fancy home fryer..

Heat to 180 degrees using a cooking thermometer clipped to the pot, adjust heat as you go to maintain temperature.

Working in batches fry the chicken until golden brown and cooked through (between 4 and 8 minutes each, depending on the thickness of the chicken).

Once each piece is done, place on the wire rack in the oven to keep warm. 

When all chicken is cooked, slice and serve on its own, or  bung ‘em in some rolls with some lettuce, kewpie etc. This bits up to you.. surely you know how to eat chicken..

Serve with Son of a Gun IPA.

‘Venom DDH Golden Ale Francesinha’

Today’s recipe is brought to you by the number 2.

Twice, previously, I’ve tried to put myself in a food coma. On consecutive evenings, in late summer in Porto, Portugal, I ordered Francesinha.

To celebrate the launch of what could be the world’s first Double dry hopped Golden Ale, By Venom Brewing, myself and the 10 year old decided to attempt this challenge at home.

If the wife was at home, we wouldn’t do this.

If I was a vegetarian, I’d stop reading right now..

If I hadn’t managed to grab a couple of sample cans of Venom Double Dry Hopped Golden Ale (we call this ullage in the trade..hopefully the boss isn’t reading this), I wouldn’t have attempted this ridiculous challenge.

Recipe – Francesinha. Serves two 


4 slices of White Bread, cut nice and thick (I buy a whole loaf and cut it into slices)
2 Sausages. I used a lovely fresh Chorizo from the local butcher.
2 “Minute” Steaks – local butcher, again.. 
2 slices of Smoked Ham – local deli this time. 2 Rashes of Bacon – back to my mates at the butchers
4 Thin Slices of Cheese. The lovely local deli provided this.. I went with the Jarlsberg.
2 Eggs – free range.. Happy chooks

(Sauce stuff) , it’ll make more than you need, but will top some pasta tomorrow

220ml Venom Double Dry Hopped Golden Ale – that’s half a can.. drink the rest
30 ml Whisky (a nice peaty, seaweed smoked one works well.. Ardbeg Corryvreckan, I’m looking at you. 1 Onion, chopped pretty roughly. A clove or two of Garlic, smashed A good slug of Olive Oil
1 Tin Chopped Tomatoes (Organic, Aussie, or just the cheap ones from ALDI) 2 tsp Corn Flour dissolved in a bit of Milk Small handful of Grated Tasty Cheese (could be the last of the Coon cheese) 1 Bay Leaf
Black pepper
Piri Piri Sauce,  you know, that bottle you stole from Nandos, that’s been at the back of the fridge for a couple of years..


In a heavy pot, fry off the Onion and Garlic in the Olive Oil for a few minutes.. medium heat

Add all the other ingredients for the sauce (except the Corn Flour, Coon and purloined Piri Piri). Cook for aprox. 30 minutes still on medium heat. Do not boil.. the hops don’t like it.

Season with Salt and Pepper and remove the Bay Leaf. Blitz the daylights out of it with a stick blender.
Add the dissolved Corn Flour to the sauce a bit at a time, stir, reheat.

Add the Grated Cheese, stir. 

Remove from the heat and add the Piri Piri to taste. Keep it somewhere warm.

Now it’s time to fire up the pan, I’ve got a fancy griddle pan, thats up to the job.

Grill the Meats, Cut the Sausages in half, cook em , cook the Steak slightly under what you prefer, put some grill lines on the Bacon..

On top of a slice of Bread place first a slice of Cheese, then a slice of Ham, then the two halves of the Sausage, Steak, then Bacon, top with the other slice of Bread and then top the Bread with another a slice of Cheese.

Repeat for the other sandwich

Put the sandwich inside a preheated oven for a couple of minutes just so the Cheese starts to melt and to let it toast a bit.
Fry the Egg in a bit of hot oil.
Remove from the oven, put the fried Egg on top of the sandwich and immediately pour the very hot sauce over it

Serve with fries and another Venom Double Dry Hopped Golden Ale