What a week (and a couple days) – lots of beer, lots of great new recipes to add to the list. Let’s check out what the beer scoop was:
And what better way to end beer week than with a cocktail made with beer? I’m pretty sure there is no better way. This is a play on those delicious Blueberry Beergaritas that we made a few months ago – oh boy were they good. But this Beergarita is straight and to the point – no frills – no fruits – just tequila and beer working together in perfect harmony, with a few other friends along to help 🙂
Beergaritas, plain and simple
(yields 4 drinks)
3/4 cup (4 shots) of your favorite tequila
3/4 cup skinny limeade
3/4 cup orange juice
2 – 12oz. bottles of light beer
(preferably a Corona style)
INGREDIENTS FOR LIMEADE
1/2 cup splenda (or truvia)
1.5 cups water
1 cup fresh lime juice
1) To make limeade: in a large saucepan, combine water and splenda until splenda is dissolved (won’t take long). Remove from heat and let cool before adding the lime juice in. You can freeze it for ‘frozen’ beergaritas – I personally like mine on the rocks 🙂
2) Combine tequila, limeade, OJ and a couple ice cubes in a cocktail shaker and shake a couple times until they’re completely mixed. Pour into a pitcher and then add the beer before serving. You can always adjust the beer taste as you see fit.
Hope you guys enjoyed beer week – and that you enjoy your weekend even more!
Some days when I’m at work, I sit at my desk and stare off into the distance (or the wall of my cube) and picture myself as a professional/full-time food blogger: in this fantasy, I am home in my ‘imaginary’ kitchen, and the sun is shining on my brand new stainless steel appliances and granite countertops. I am ready to try a new recipe, and I have all of my ingredients perfectly laid out on the island, each measured out in their own little bowls. I take my time mixing and mashing and whisking, and retire to the living room to watch Barefoot Contessa while it’s cooking (because ya know, it’s ‘research’). And then it’s ready! It looks like a picture from Bon Appetit, and tastes even better! And the best part is that I have all the time in the world to photograph this masterpiece during the time of day when the natural light is the best and I can style my little head off for hours, because heck, it’s my job to do so. What a life!
And then I hear – “Kate – Kate – how are those TPS reports comin’ along?”
In reality though (I don’t really work with TPS reports sillies), after rushing home from work to let Hairy out, I usually am still am missing about 5 of the ingredients that I need for the night’s recipe, and as summer is dwindling down, so is the amount of daylight, and it’s a race against the clock to try to get anything done in time to photograph it in ideal lighting.
What’s this tangent all about? Along with many delicious recipes that I have felt are worth sharing, tonight’s was one that lost the ‘natural light’ race, and instead of being shot in a beautiful beam of sun filtered through the window, it was shot in the soft glow of an IKEA lamp (ew).
But, this Honey-Beer Pizza Dough was too good not to share. Adapted from Girl Versus Dough’s recipe (and by adapted, I mean adding a splash of honey) it was a flavorful base for your favorite pizza pie!
Honey-Beer Pizza Dough
*Adapted from Girl Versus Dough
(the original recipe was 2x this amt, yielding 2 crusts – the below measurements will yield 1 crust – sorry folks, couldn’t bring myself to tackle Market Basket on a Tuesday night)
2 cups all-purpose bread flour
1 & 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp olive oil
3/4 cup room-temperature beer
(the stronger the flavor, the better – I used Old Leg Humper Porter – yes, that is real)
1/2 tbsp. honey
1) Place all ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fixed with a paddle attachment and mixed until just combined. Replace paddle attachment with dough hook and knead dough until smooth and elastic, about 7 minutes (or knead by hand on a lightly floured countertop for about 10 minutes). Form dough into a ball, place in a lightly greased bowl, cover, and let rise until doubled, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
2) Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Remove risen dough from bowl and punch down. Shape dough into a 10-12 inch round or 8-by-12 inch rectangle. Place onto pizza stone or parchment paper-lined baking sheet. For thin crust, bake pizza immediately. For medium to thick crust, let dough rest for about 30 minutes.
3) Add your toppings and bake for about 10 minutes (or until cheese has reached desired level of meltedness).
So at about 10 p.m. when this bad boy wrapped up, I sampled a sliver and the dough was so good. The porter added a ton of flavor I think I would even add more honey next time. I was timid with it because I didn’t want it to be too sweet, but it could definitely use more. I personally like that little hint of sweetness.
Tomorrow’s daydream: Martha comes over for lunch – and we talk recipes – and maybe some stories from the clink.
Before tonight, I questioned the sanity of the person who came up with the idea of shoving a can of beer into the rear-end of a dead chicken and calling it dinner. But, my mind has been changed.
6 months of marriage was achieved on Saturday! So Dave and I decied to try this new restaurant in the neighborhood that opened up called M3. M3’s predecessor, Al Fresco, seemed like it was in business forever, one of those small italian eateries that never had a packed house or a line out the door, but their longevity in the area implied they were doing something right. Well – I guess they weren’t, because one day as I was jogging by, expecting a waft of roasted garlic and simmering meatballs as I passed by, Al Fresco was gone. And the next time I ran by, M3 was there, and it was PACKED! I tried to figure out what type of place this was, as the name isn’t very telling. I saw a lot of intriguing things 1) Chalkboard tables – perfect for 5 (and 30) year old patrons 2) Beer in cans 3) The dessert menu – FRIED fluffenutter! What????? Apon further investigation, I discovered that it was a Southern Joint, toteing all of pre-diabetic Paula Deens faves – Fried Chicken, Fried Green Tomatoes, Fried Cheese curds (are you picking up on a theme?) and my dinner for the evening, Beer Can Hen. And after blushing when the waitress placed the violated cooked hen on the table, I was able to dig in (only after the hostess came over and helped me remove the can from it’s rear – she must have seen that this was unchartered territory for me). My only disappointment was Harriet the Hen didn’t have quite as much meat on her bones as I would have liked. But, it was a great excuse to try it the next night for dinner! And strangely enough, my mom bought Dave a special “Beer Can Chicken” grill pan for his birthday, so it seemed as though it was written in the stars.
Spice Rubbed Beer Can Chicken
*A K&D Original recipe
1 – 3-4 lb. Chicken Roaster
1 – 12oz. can of beer (your choice – we used a summer lager)
SPICE RUB INGREDIENTS
1 tbsp. chilli powder
1 tbsp. cumin
1 tbsp. seasoned salt
1 tbsp. garlic salt
1 tbsp. onion powder
1 tbsp. brown sugar
1/2 tbsp. red pepper flakes
few shakes of salt and pepper
1) Remove giblets from the inside of the chicken. Rinse and pat the chicken dry.
2) Prepare your grill for indirect heat – we basically lit two piles of charcoal on either side of the grill, leaving a space in the center of the grate for the chicken that wouldn’t be directly over the heat (this is a really good video tutorial). But, if you’re using a gas grill, turn on all burners until grill reaches 350 degrees, then turn off the burners on one side. If cooking in an oven, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a shallow roasting pan with tin foil to catch any drips.
3) Get rid of half of the can of beer (how you choose to do this is completely up to you – I suggest drinking it :)). If using a special BCC pan, place can in the compartment reserved for it. If not, place can upright into the chicken, making sure it’s fitted within the cavity of the chicken.
4) Coat the outside of the chicken with olive oil and then coat it in the spice rub.
5) After your briquettes have become ‘ashy’ looking, you can place your chicken onto the grate. Roast for 1.5 – 2 hours, rotating about halfway through cooking time, until an instant read thermometer reads 180 degrees.
6) Take chicken off of the grill and let sit for about 10 minutes before serving.
I’m gonna go ahead and say that this may have been the best tasting chicken I’ve ever had in my life – swear. The moistness was unreal, and the slow roasting really let the flavors of the beer and the spices seep into the meat. And the great thing about the pan was that you could just toss your potatoes and veggies right onto the grill with the chicken. Even if you didn’t have Beer Can Chicken specific pan, you could probably do the same with another vegetable roasting basket for the grill (place the chicken with the beer can in the center of the roasting basket and place the sides around it).
So if you’re looking for the most tender and flavorful chicken you’ve ever had in your life, and you don’t mind sticking an aluminum can in the butt of a chicken, well then you’ve got yourself a doozie of a recipe here!
So I’ve provided a perfect fall dinner for you – and now here’s dessert.
I know that there are still some decent weeks of summer left, but fall is by far my most favorite season of the year. The beautiful colors of the leaves, the crisp chill in the air, and the shameless use of PUMPKIN in everything.
This recipe caught my eye because 1) it used beer 2) it called for pumpkin and 3) well, brownies might just be one of my most favorite desserts ever. This is the third recipe that I’ve used from Women’s Health Magazine – these ladies really know their beer recipes! While visually, I don’t think they came out quite as well as the WHM ladies version, tastefully, they delivered!
Chocolate Stout Pumpkin Brownies
*Womens Health Magazine
2 Tbsp low-fat cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup plus 1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup plus 2 Tbsp whole-wheat pastry flour
1 tsp cinnamon, divided
6 oz bittersweet baking chocolate, chopped
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup stout beer, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1) Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease an 8-inch square baking pan. In a bowl, stir together cream cheese, 1/4 cup sugar, canned pumpkin, 1 egg, 2 tablespoons flour, and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon; set aside.
2) Place chocolate and butter in a metal bowl and heat over a pot of simmering water, stirring until completely melted. Remove the mixture from the heat and stir in 1/2 cup sugar. Mix in 2 eggs, one at a time. Gently stir in 1 cup flour, cocoa powder, beer, vanilla extract, baking powder, salt, and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon.
3) Scrape half the chocolate batter into the prepared baking pan and spread evenly. Spread half the pumpkin mixture on top, then add the remaining chocolate mixture on top of that and spread evenly. Top with the remaining pumpkin mixture. Gently swirl batter with a butter knife. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Let cool before slicing.
These were phenomenal, however I think next time there are a couple things I might do differently. 1) Double the pumpkin mixture – I felt that the chocolatey-ness of the brownies really overp0wered the deliciousness of the pumpkin swirl on the top. So I would recommend doing that, especially if you love pumpkin!
I also think I would maybe cut back on the amount of unsweetened baking chocolate, maybe from 6 oz. to 4 or 3. I personally don’t love that bitter chocolate taste, and felt that the brownies were a little bit on the bitter chocolatey side, so I think I would just maybe cut back on it a bit next time.
You guys will love these though 🙂 Another keeper for ‘Cooking with Beer’!
I’d like to start this post out by giving a shout out to Lilly at Lilly Sues Bites & Brews. She was so kind to nominate us for the ‘Versatile Blogger’ award a few weeks back while we were on vacation. I remember looking at the post, and the first pictures I saw were of her pouring wine into a coffee cup (AMAZING) and spreading cheese on crackers – wine and cheese and crackers are one of Dave and I’s top 3 favorite meals (even though it should really just be a snack, we make a meal out of it many nights). And then I went on to read more, and found that in addition to blogging about delicious food and restuarants and recipes, she’s kind of into beer, like a lot. She even has a “Beer” tab on her blog with all these beers, categorized by style that I am dying to try! Some I (and Dave) have never even heard of. And I wanted to wait until it was fully appropriate to thank her. And I’m pretty sure “Cooking with Beer Week” is the perfect time! So thank-you Lilly – you’re a beer connoisseur that I aspire to be like!
Now onto the recipe – pork is one of those meats we don’t dabble into much. Not because we don’t like it, but because eating chicken 5 nights a week is SOOOO fun! (hence this blog – branching outage). I honestly really enjoy pork dishes – a nice breaded pork chop (“It’s shake n’ bake – an’ I haelped!”) or a nice cut of lean tenderloin, marinated in something yummy. After making this, I realized that I really gotta give Porky Pig and his body parts some more playing time. When I saw this recipe (also from Women’s Health Magazine – holla at the delicious Beer recipes ladies!) I thought “Oooooeeeee that sounds amazing! And it uses beer! sold!”
I remember at Thanksgiving, my mom decided it was time to try ‘brining’ the turkey because she’d heard so many good things about it. And I watched her as she shoved the 30-lb bird in this ginormous plastic bag of brine thinking to myself “She is cra-cra” – but, after doing it myself in this recipe, I gotta say I’m a believer in brining. The pork tenderloin was sooooo moist and juicy, and the flavors of the brine really gave it so much more dimension than a regular old piece of pork.
Beer-Brined Pork Tenderloin with Beer-Mustard Sauce
*From Women’s Health Magazine
2 cups plus 1 1/2 cups low-hops lager or pilsner
3 Tbsp kosher salt
1 Tbsp sugar
2-3 lbs. pork tenderloin (or you could use chops)
1 Tbsp plus 2 tsp canola or vegetable oil
2 shallots, diced
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 Tbsp honey
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1 Tbsp grainy mustard
2 tsp cornstarch
1/2 tsp black pepper
1) In a container large enough for tenderloin to lie flat, add 2 cups water, 2 cups beer, kosher salt, and sugar. Place tenderloin in liquid and add more beer or water to cover the meat. Refrigerate for 4 to 6 hours (I actually did it overnight), flipping once if possible.
2) In a saucepan, heat 2 teaspoons oil over medium heat. Add shallots and cook for 2 minutes. Add remaining 1 1/2 cups beer, broth, honey, balsamic vinegar, thyme, mustard, and salt to taste. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-high, and simmer for 8 minutes, or until reduced by about half. Stir in cornstarch and continue simmering for 2 minutes, or until slightly thickened. Remove from heat.
3) Remove tenderloin from brining liquid, pat dry with paper towels, and season with black pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cut tenderloin into slices and cook for 4 to 5 minutes per side, or until they reach an internal temperature of 160°F. Let rest for 5 minutes and serve topped with beer-mustard sauce.
The outcome was a moist (I know – I’ve used this word twice and I hate it too – but sometimes it’s just necessary) and juicy pork tenderloin topped with a tangy sauce where the beer and mustard flavors were evident, but ever so subtle. I could see this dish being perfect in the fall, after a long day of apple picking or leaf raking, and you chow it down while an apple pie cooks in the oven and you carve pumpkins by a nice warm fire (can you tell I’m anxious for fall?)
Or, ya know, on an 85 degree hot and humid summer day – either way it’s a delicious keeper!
Thanks for sharing your loins with us Porky 🙂
There are few things in life that make me happier than:
1) The weekend
3) A delicious cold beer on a hot summer day
You may not believe this, but I just recently became a beer drinker. In college, I was ‘that girl’ that went to a Keg party, pretended like there was Natty Ice in my red solo cup, but it was really a concoction that I made at home, stuffed in my purse, and poured in secret while no one was looking. I always felt shame – why can’t I like beer? It’s the ‘popular’ drink in college – it’s cheap – it comes in massive metal barrels that you slap a tube onto and it flows like spring water all night – heck you can even make games out of drinking it! But I just could not get past the taste of it – the smell of it – my taste buds were much more refined, and White Zin out of a box seemed to be one of the only things that would satisfy them.
After college though I decided it was time to join the masses, and living on a ‘post-grad’ budget, $1.50 Bud Light drafts became very pleasing to my wallet, and eventually my taste buds. And then I met Dave, and my world of beer drinking was rocked. In our first couple of dates, he ordered beers that I always saw in the rainbow of taps on the bar, but never in a million years thought to order. Beers that were so dark, they looked like tar. Dave would say “Just try it” and I’d take a sip of them, to be nice and make a good impression, and I’d force it down my throat, trying to find my happy place, saying “Oooh yeah, that’s interesting” thinking to myself “What is WRONG with this person? This tastes like toilet water”. And then 4+ years later, I married this crazy person, and share many of the same favorite beers with him – funny how things change eh?
So we’re cookin’ with beer this week folks, and first on the menu is Roasted Garlic Beer Bread – three of my favorite things in one magical loaf 🙂
Roasted Garlic Beer Bread
*Women’s Health Magazine
2 whole garlic bulbs
2 cups whole-wheat pastry flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp baking powder
1 Tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
3/4 tsp salt
1 & 1/2 cups lager or pilsner
1 Preheat oven to 375°F. Remove the papery covering of the garlic and slice off the tops. Wrap heads in foil and bake for 45 minutes, or until garlic is very soft. Let cool.
2 Grease a 9-inch-by-5-inch loaf pan. In a large bowl, squeeze out the soft garlic pulp and mix with flours, sugar, olive oil, baking powder, rosemary, and salt. Add beer and stir until just combined (don’t overmix). Bake for 50 to 55 minutes, or until top is golden brown and an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Let cool before unmolding and slicing.
If you’re looking for a hearty bread packed with flavor (and beer!) than this is a winner! And if you’re not 100% on the garlic train, I think even just using one bulb of roasted garlic vs. two would still give it that same great garlicy flavor. And if you are a garlic person and decide to use the 2 bulbs, pass the altoids 🙂