Tag Archives: IPA

Cooking with Beer – Two Recipes

It’s cold out! When the February snow and wind hit, I like to hunker down with a hearty braise inspired by the land of “Cuisine à la Bière,” served with a vibrant green salad tossed with an orange IPA-flavored dressing.

You may know that Belgium has a long and proud brewing tradition that stretches back for hundreds of years. Beer is so deeply rooted in Belgian culture that it holds the same revered place on the table as wine does in France or Italy, and is used in many of the same ways. Cooking with beer can be a real treat, and this Belgian inspired one-pot meal is one of my favorites to make in the winter, especially on a long, cold, snowy Sunday.

The beer I’ve chosen to use in this dish comes from the esteemed Dubuisson brewery, the oldest in Wallonia (older than most Trappist breweries!). Their flagship beer, Scaldis Amber, is a 12% ABV take on an English Barleywine. It adds both fruity and savory notes to the roast, with flavors of ripe fruit and caramel, along with a hint of herbal hops and licorice. Although it’s high in alcohol, most of that will steam off while cooking, so don’t worry, this is a family-friendly pot roast!

Scaldis is something we regularly carry, but if you want to branch out, any Belgian-style Amber or Dark Ale will do. Some of our favorites for cooking (and drinking) include:

-Allagash Dubbel
-Rochefort ‘8’ or ‘10’
-St. Bernardus ‘Pater 6’
-North Coast ‘Brother Thelonious’

When it comes to pairing a beer to drink alongside this braise, do we really have to tell you what would go best? Scaldis Amber, of course! If that’s a little too strong for you, any of the aforementioned beers will also work quite nicely.

To learn more about the beer, check out Dubuisson’s excellent website: https://dubuisson.com/en-us, and check out https://dubuisson.com/en-us/our-beers/scaldis-amber for more on the Scaldis.

cookingbeer4Belgian Pot Roast
If you’re short on time, skip the steps below and instead use a slow cooker. You can put the whole shebang in on low before you go to work, then add the root veggies and turn it to high when you get home.

Ingredients:
4 – 5 pound beef rump roast or bottom round
¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
(optional: ¼ tsp Old Bay seasoning or cinnamon for extra flavor)
2 tbsp olive oil or butter
2 large onions, cut in half & sliced into thick half moons
3 carrots, peeled & cut into cubes
1 big sprig of thyme
1 bay leaf
1 12 oz. bottle of Scaldis Amber
A mix of your favorite root vegetables to finish the roast: small potatoes, parsnips, rutabaga, etc., cut into bite-sized chunks.

Method:
Preheat oven to 325 F.

Mix the flour, salt & pepper (and the Old Bay or cinnamon, if using) in a big plastic container with a lid.

Heat a dutch oven or deep-sided casserole over medium–high heat.

Dry the roast well with paper towels and put it in the container with the flour mixture. Gently shake it up, down and all around to evenly coat the meat.

Warm the oil and/or butter in the dutch oven until hot (not smoking!). Tap off any excess flour and brown the meat on all sides, a few minutes per side.

Remove the meat to a plate to rest, turn the heat down to medium, and add the onions to all the beautiful brown bits left in the pan. If it seems dry, add another 1-2 teaspoons of oil or butter.

Cover the pot, and sauté the onions, stirring every 2 minutes or so until soft and just beginning to take on some color.

Push the onions to the sides of the pan, put the meat (with any juice on the plate) into the middle of the pan and add the carrots, thyme, a little salt and pepper, and the whole bottle of Scaldis. Mix everything up around the meat, scraping up any bits stuck to the pan.

Bring it gently to a boil, cover, and bake in your oven for about 3 ½ hours.

Meanwhile, scrub your root veggies and cut them into evenly sized chunks – about the size you’d want to put in your mouth after they’re cooked.

After 3 ½ hours, add your root veggies to the pot, stir them up a bit in the sauce, and leave to cook for another 30 minutes or so, or until the meat is falling apart.

Let the roast cool a bit, and eat it with a cold glass of Scaldis Amber!

cookingbeer2Orange & Ale Vinaigrette
To complement the rich roast I like to serve a vibrant, zesty salad that also uses beer as a main ingredient. With thanks to Sean Paxton of Home Brew Chef & BeerAdvocate, here’s one of my favorite salad dressings to make any time of year, but especially when I’m missing the sun.

Ingredients:
3 oz. IPA (I like any of the following for this recipe: Sierra Nevada Torpedo, Grey Sail Captain’s Daughter, Harpoon Hoppy Adventure, or Lost Nation Mosaic IPA – or just use your favorite)
1 tbsp minced shallot (or half a small onion, minced)
1 tsp grated orange zest
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp Dijon mustard
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil (bring out the good stuff for this)
Salt and pepper to taste

Method:
Put the shallot, orange zest, honey and mustard in a small bowl and whisk in the beer until well combined.

Slowly whisk in the oil, a few drops at a time, until the whole thing is creamy and emulsified.

Drizzle your dressing over hearty greens, or blanched green beans, or asparagus, beets, hard boiled eggs, cucumbers, tomatoes, etc., you get the drift.

The dressing will keep in your fridge for about five days if you don’t eat it all first!

Enjoy! –Liam

Summer Pairings: A Cool Dish for a Hot Week

vietnamese_salad_edible_rhody

 

It’s hot.

The air is hot. Our political climate is hot. Our society is hot. And we’re not even halfway through the Summer of 2016.

Things could change if we all cool down our own little corners of the world, one step at a time. And a good place to start is at the table, with family and friends.

Begin with a delicious, refreshing and easy to prepare chilled dish from Jason Timothy, chef/owner of Providence’s Laughing Gorilla Catering, that’s sure to please the crowd of 2 or 10 gathered at your table. Add open bottles of icy beer and wine (our picks below), good conversation, laughter and love, and watch the mercury drop.

edible_rhody_noodle_pair
We can’t get enough of the Gobelsburg Cistercien Rosé from Austria. Its bright balance of fresh acidity and excellent, round strawberry and peach fruit flavors make this a great match. The sauce’s citrus and jalapeno tang will be cooled by the fruit, while the minerality and acid provide enough structure to round out the whole dish.

We chose Revival Brewing Co.’s Fanny IPA as this noodle dish’s ideal beer partner. Its fruity hops from the Southern Hemisphere will highlight the melon’s cool notes, which piney North American hops accentuate the dish’s spicy flavors. And what’s even better, Fanny is low in alcohol, so it says as light in your  as does the salad, keeping everything in harmony.

And for the recipe, published in the beautiful Summer 2016 issue of Edible Rhody:

CHILLED VIETNAMESE RICE NOODLE SALAD
A note from chef Jason Timothy:  This is an easy, flavorful salad that is incredibly versatile. It’s been a favorite among my friends at summer cookouts when the weather is hot, the grill is going and the produce is abundant. I love to grab herbs and vegetables from the Armory Farmers’ Market that’s almost outside my door.

INGREDIENTS
1 package rice noodles (size noodle to your liking)
2 tablespoons neutral oil (such as grapeseed or canola)
¼ cup fish sauce
¼ cup water
¼ cup sugar
¼ cup fresh-squeezed lime juice, plus extra wedges for garnish
1 cucumber, seeded and sliced
2 cups sliced melon (watermelon or cantaloupe), rind removed
1 pound (3–4 cups) fresh bean sprouts
½ cup fresh Thai basil leaves, torn
½ cup fresh mint leaves, torn
½ cup fresh cilantro leaves
3 jalapeños, sliced (optional)
Kosher or sea salt
Freshly ground pepper

In a large pot, bring 8 cups of water to a boil. Add noodles and cook for 4–5 minutes. Strain noodles. Give them a quick rinse with cold water just to get the cooling started and, once well drained, toss lightly with oil. Let rest in the refrigerator, covered.

Meanwhile, combine fish sauce, water and sugar in a 1-quart saucepan. Cook until sugar is completely dissolved, 3–4 minutes. Add lime juice and set aside to cool.

When ready, add noodles to a large mixing (or serving) bowl. Add sliced cucumber and melon slices, bean sprouts, basil, mint, cilantro and sliced jalapeños. Toss with sauce. Add salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with lime wedges. Serve immediately or cover and chill until serving.

Serves 4–6.

Stay cool, eat well, and carry on.

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Black Hog Brewing Co.

blackhog_cansWe’re rolling out the welcome mat for cans of Black Hog Brewing’s terrific beer.

Made just down a ways in Connecticut (Oxford, to be exact), the popular craft brewery with the super hot label art is the creation of three beer-loving pals: Tyler Jones, whose brewing chops were honed at Mercury Brewing, Smuttynose and Portsmouth Brewery (NH), and brothers Jason and Tom Sobocinski (the latter a PC alum!), owners of the fantastic New Haven-based cheese shop & bistro Caseus, the award-winning bar Ordinary, and Smoke Box BBQ.

We love their Granola Brown Ale, which is brewed with a mix of oatmeal, grains, hops and roasted malts. The guys say they were inspired to make this beer on the hikes they take before beginning one of their legendary pig roasts (which they do often, hence the brewery’s name). While hiking and munching on crunchy granola they decided to incorporate the oat flavors into their beer. It’s smooth and malty, and finishes with – you guessed it – notes of chocolate and raisin.

Their Easy Rye’ Da is an “easy drinkin’” low ABV rye India Pale Ale. They cut back the ABV on this session style rye so that, according to their (really awesome) website, “you can cruise on it all day long, take it easy, have a few and remember what it’s all about.” It’s hoppy, with sweet and spicy citrus notes.

And check out the super hot Ginga’ Ninja, a red India Pale Ale brewed with 6 lbs of fresh ginger in every batch, and named after Tyler’s fiery-haired wife. It’s all ginger up front, and finishes with a lasting hop flavor.

In addition to images of their vibrant design-forward cans, the Black Hog Brewing website is chock full of strong pairing suggestions. And, not surprisingly given Tom and Jason’s background, lots of terrific cheese pairings are offered.

Black Hog Brewing Co.’s cans are on sale for the month of March at Bottles. Come give them a try!

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Super Bowl Party Pairings

So your team hasn’t made it to the big game. So what. We can think of at least one reason why this could be a good thing: You now have more time to pay attention to the food on the table and the drink on the bar than the action on the field. And sure, yes, ok, your standard suds will be just fine with traditional game day fare. But put in a touch of extra effort, people – it’ll make game day that much more delicious.

Here are the brews we’ll be drinking when watching the two teams vie for their big fancy rings.

superbowl_snack_sausage

Smokey Sausages with Doppelbocks. The German beer’s big, strong and dark maltiness is a natural fit with the smoky meaty flavor of cocktail sausages & pigs in a blanket. We’re reaching for the  Weihenstephan Korbinian Doppelbock for its figgy, nutty roastiness.

superbowl_snacks_chili

Bowls of Chili with Big IPAs. A classic marriage of a hot-spicy chili with the hop-spicy IPA. We’re going for the sticky, hoppy, bold Lord Hobo Boom Sauce IPA.

superbowl_snacks_wings

Buffalo Wings & Blue Cheese Sauce with German Pilsners. The crisp, floral and refreshing German pils will balance out the wings’ addictive cheesy, spicy goodness. And the classic Bitburger Pilsner fits the bill for us every time.

superbowl_snacks_dip

Potato Chips & Onion Dip with Saisons. Nothing’s easier than ripping open a bag of chips and dipping them into a can of good old creamy, herbal onion dip. Nothing, that is, except cracking opening a bottle of a saison, whose herbal and spicy notes will balance that creamy dip. Allagash Saison, anyone?

Enjoy the game and may the best team win!