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Chocolate Stout and Toasted Coconut Ice Cream (vegan)

Chocolate Stout and Toasted Coconut Ice Cream (vegan)

Everyone wants to feel like they have things figured out. That they have everything in it’s designated box. You’e made decisions, said decisions help you navigate the world.

And every once in a while that comfortable social constructionists gets a bit rocked. You hate country music but you find yourself sinfully signing along to Devil Went Down to Georgia and really enjoying yourself. And you watch the entire last half of Pitch Perfect when it comes on HBO and will never admit that you YouTubed the last performance three times the next days.

Which is the same reason you barely glance at the Vegetarian section of the menu at resturants. Because you’ve decided that you like meat, and that section doesn’t apply to you. And then an ice cream comes alone and it’s better than any other chocolate ice cream you’ve had and it’s vegan. Which makes you wonder about those line dancing bars you’ve avoided and the American cars you never test drove.

Because it’s just plants and beer and it’s better than the "regular" ice cream your usually drawn to. And that makes you want to explore the other things that just aren’t you. Which may be a good thing, but they don’t always end this well.

Chocolate Stout and Toasted Coconut Ice Cream (vegan)2

Chocolate Stout and Toasted Coconut Ice Cream (vegan)


  • 1 13.5 fl oz can full fat coconut milk
  • 1 cup granulated sugar *
  • 2/3 cup chocolate stout
  • ¼ cup high quality cocoa powder
  • ½ cup coconut flakes


  • In a large sauce pan over medium high heat add the coconut milk, sugar, stout, and cocoa powder. Bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly thickened, about 8 minutes.
  • Chill for at least 2 hours or until cold to the touch.
  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Add coconut flakes to a baking sheet. Bake for 3 minutes, stir and continue to bake until golden brown, about 3 additional minutes.
  • Churn in ice cream maker according to manufactures specifications until a soft serve consistency, about 15 minutes.
  • Add to an air tight container, stir in the coconut flakes.
  • Chill until firm, at least 2 hours.

*While sugar is inherently vegan, some companies use processes using animal bones. If you’re concerned about it, look for a company that produces vegan sugar, like the Whole Foods 365 brand.

Beer is similar, to make sure the stout you choose is vegan check Barnivoire to make sure.

I use the KitchenAid ice cream maker and this cocoa powder for this recipe (affiliate link).

Chocolate Stout and Toasted Coconut Ice Cream (vegan)3

Miniature Coffee Stout Cinnamon Rolls

Coffee Stout Cinnamon Rolls3

No matter how great beer is in meat recipes, bread will always be it’s culinary kindred spirit. Because the heart and soul of bread and beer is the same: yeast. The beast that gives us bread, also gives us beer. A few months ago I was interviewing a brewer at an LA brewery who told me how he really feels about his job, "I don’t work for the brewery, I work for the yeast."

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It might sound intimidating, but really, nothing will work harder for you in the kitchen than yeast. It’s the most active ingredient you’ll ever work with, it becomes a cooking partner if you can just follow it’s rules and it will do more for your bread than you do.

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And there is something about watching yeast dough rise, smelling it bake in your kitchen, and tasting it fresh from the oven that just has healing powers. Just follow the simple steps: make sure the yeast hasn’t expired, make sure the temperate is correct (use a cooking thermometer), and make sure your kitchen isn’t too cold, and you’ll be fine. You’re yeast will work for you to make a gorgeous loaf.

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Then theres the beer, that has it’s own yeast, and it’s made from bread like ingredients. It’s a bread makers dream when it comes to baking the perfect batch of cinnamon rolls. You’ll get more than what you’ve worked for, and a batch of unforgettable rolls that are more than worth the effort they took. Plus you’ll be able to serve beer for breakfast, and that’s a dream all on it’s own.

Coffee Stout Cinnamon Rolls2

Miniature Coffee Stout Cinnamon Rolls


For the Dough:

  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 packets rapid rise yeast
  • 1/4 cup dry milk powder
  • 4 tbs butter
  • 1/4 cup cream
  • ¾ cup coffee stout
  • 2 large egg yolk room temperature
  • ½ tsp salt

For the Filling:

  • 1/2 cup butter softened
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 2 tbs cinnamon

For the Frosting:

  • 8 oz cream cheese
  • ½ cup butter
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • ¼ cup Coffee Stout


  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook add the flour, sugar, rapid rise yeast (do not use regular dry active yeast), and dry milk powder. Stir to combine.
  • In a microwave safe bowl, melt the butter. Add the cream and stout, microwave for 15 seconds, test temperature and repeat until the temperature of the liquid reaches between 120 and 125 degrees.
  • Add liquid to the mixer and stir until incorporated.
  • Add the egg yolk and salt, mix on medium high speed until dough comes together and gathers around the blade.
  • Place the dough in a lightly oiled large bowl, cover with plastic wrap and allow to sit in a warm room until doubled in size, 1 ½ to 2 hours.
  • On a lightly floured surface roll out the dough to an approximately 12 inch by 16 inch rectangle.
  • In a bowl stir together the butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon.
  • Spread the cinnamon-sugar butter evenly over the dough. Cut the dough in half, lengthwise.
  • Starting at the long end, roll each half into a tight log.
  • Cut each log into 1-inch rolls, place cut side up in a mini muffin tin (or tightly into a baking dish) that has been sprayed with cooking spray. Cover and allow to rise until doubled, about 45 minutes (to make ahead, the second rise can take place over 12 hours in a refrigerator. Remove from fridge and allow to come to room temperature the following day prior baking).
  • Heat oven to 350. Bake until golden brown, about 22-25 minutes.
  • To make the frosting, beat the softened butter and softened cream cheese until well combined and fluffy. Add the powdered sugar and mix until well combined. Add the beer and mix until light and fluffy. Spread frosting on rolls prior to serving.

Coffee Stout Cinnamon Rolls

Orange Chili Porter Glazed Skillet Chicken

Honey Chili Porter Glazed Chicken 2I know the google stalking that goes on. But don’t think it’s one sided. I see the key word searches, or the things you post about me on Facebook, but I do the same thing.

I’ve clicked over to your page too, seen the vacation photos and the fact that you also have a mild obsession with Bill Withers too, and I’ve wondered if we’d be friends in real life. I’ve clicked over to your Pinterest page after you’ve re-pinned one of my pins and thought we could hang out. Have some beers and talk about those rustic modern houses we love but will probably never have. Or the make up tutorials that we will never even attempt.

The breweries we’ve been to and the ones still on our lists. The places we’ve been, the place we want to go and the places we wished we’d skipped. We would laugh and talk and share some beer, if we knew each other in real life.  I’d tell you all the things I’m afraid to type out loud and you’d understand.

Because beer people are that way. We like each other, we get along and we root for each other. If only we knew each other in real life, we’d each pick up a round of pints and hang out in person. Beer does that, it seems to level the playing field and make us all friends.

Long live beer people.

Honey Chili Porter Glazed Chicken_

Orange Chili Porter Glazed Skillet Chicken


  • 2 cloves garlic grated with a microplane
  • 1 cup fresh orange juice about 3 large naval or cara cara oranges
  • 2 tbs soy sauce
  • ½ tsp red chili sauce such as sriracha
  • 1 tsp red chili flake
  • ¼ tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup porter
  • 1 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs 4-6 large
  • salt and pepper
  • Rice for serving


  • In a medium bowl whisk together the garlic, orange juice, soy sauce, red chili sauce, red chili flake, smoked paprika, onion powder, brown sugar and porter.
  • Sprinkle the chicken thighs on all sides with salt and pepper.
  • Add chicken to the marinade, cover and chill for at least 2 hours and up to 8 hours.
  • Preheat oven to 400.
  • Pour the chicken and the marinade into a cast iron skillet.
  • Bake at 400 for 15 minutes. Turn chicken over and continue to bake until cooked through, about 15 additional minutes.
  • Remove chicken from the skillet and transfer to a serving platter.
  • Place the skillet and the marinade over high heat, stirring occasionally, until reduced and thickened. Pour glaze over chicken before serving.
  • Note: if you don’t own a cast iron skillet, pour the chicken and marinade into a baking dish. Once the chicken is cooked through, pour marinade into a pot and cook until reduced to a glaze.
  • Note: If glaze becomes too thick and sticky, return to heat, stirring in a few splashes of beer to thin.

Honey Chili Porter Glazed Chicken 3

Salted Beer Caramel Topped Blondies

Salted Beer Caramel Topped Blondies_

I was in a port town in Greece, waiting for a boat to take me back to Italy, when I decided to spend the last bit of money I had with me on Baklava. This was the moment I realized how important food had become to me. I had just spent my last year of college working three jobs in order to save enough money to buy a plane ticket to Europe and hope that my Europe On A Shoestring guide book would get me through the trip with enough money leftover to make my first student loan payment when I got home. Like any great obsession, there is very little choice in the matter. It either grabs you or it doesn’t, and it often isn’t until it’s too late that you see that the shark has your leg.

A side effect of this affliction is an extraordinary fixations that it creates. Sometimes it’s a dish. Sometimes it’s an ingredient. Sometimes its a cooking method.

I have in no way been saved from these fixations. It’s gnocchi, and goat cheese, and roasted chicken, and the perfect dinner rolls, and caramel, and so many more.

I started making caramel a few years ago, it’s simple. You just need a candy thermometer and the patience not to walk away, since that will always be the moment the sugar burns. Caramel has become an obsession, what I can put in it, or on it, or with it, or how many times I can make it during Christmas before people start to roll their eyes.

Don’t leave me alone with sugar and a pot. You never know what you’ll come back too, but it’ll probably be a dark amber color and taste like beer.

Salted Beer Caramel Topped Blondies 2


Salted Beer Caramel Topped Blondies


For the Blondies Layer:

  • ½ cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg plus 1 yolk
  • 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbs stout beer
  • 1 ¼ cup bread flour
  • 1 tsp salt

For the Caramel Layer

  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup white sugar
  • ½ cup light corn syrup
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • ¼ cup stout plus 1 tbs divided


  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer with a whisk attachment add the butter and brown sugar, beat on high until well combined.
  • Add the egg, yolk and vanilla extra, mix until well combined, light and fluffy.
  • Add 2 tablespoons stout, stir until combined.
  • Sprinkle the flour and salt over the butter mixture, stir until combined.
  • Spread evenly into a greased 8X8 baking pan.
  • Bake at 350 for 22-25 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Allow to cool completely.
  • In a pot over high heat add the butter, brown sugar, white sugar, corn syrup, heavy cream and ¼ cup stout. Stir until the butter has melted and the sugar has dissolved.
  • Allow to boil until a dark caramel color and reached 248 degrees on a candy thermometer, about 8 minutes. Allow to cool for ten minutes.
  • Pour over the blondies layer, chill until set, about 3 hours.


Chocolate Stout Cheesecake Stuffed French Toast


Chocolate Stout Cheesecake Stuffed French Toast P

I have this idea that breakfast is a mark for true culinary hospitality. It’s much more intimate than dinner, it’s more vulnerable in a way. You’ve had dinner with hundreds of people, but how many people have you had breakfast with?

How many times have you made breakfast for someone? How often do you get up early, put on a larger pot of the good coffee, mapped out several dishes to serve someone just past dawn?

Chocolate Stout Cheesecake Stuffed French Toast_

Those people are the special ones. I bet the people you’ve done that for are the ones you keep in your life, keep with you through the hard times. The ones who help you move, the ones who’s weddings you’ve gone to hung over from the festivities of the night before, the ones who show up at the hospital, the ones who don’t forget your birthday.

Chocolate Stout Cheesecake Stuffed French Toast 4

So when we make these breakfast, for those Breakfast Worthy People in our lives, it should be something great. Something unforgettable. Something that we need to schedule a mid day run to work off.

And beer is absolutely acceptable during these breakfast festivities.

Chocolate Stout Cheesecake Stuffed French Toast

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4 servings


For the Filling:

  • 8 wt ounces cream cheese softened
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate chips melted
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • pinch salt
  • 3 tbs chocolate stout

For the French Toast:

  • 1 large loaf Italian bread
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup cream
  • ½ cup chocolate stout
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3 tbs sugar
  • 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 3 tbs butter


  • In a medium bowl add the cream cheese, melted chocolate, granulated sugar and salt. Using a hand mixer, mix until well combined. Add the 3 tablespoons chocolate stout, mix until well combined and creamy.
  • Slice the bread into 4 inch slices (about 6 total).
  • Using a sharp knife, make a slit in the center of the bread slices, forming a pocket for the filling.
  • In a medium bowl add the eggs, cream, ½ cup chocolate stout, vanilla, and sugar, whisk until well combined.
  • Add the graham cracker crumbs to a shallow bowl or a plate.
  • Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium high heat.
  • One at a time spoon the filling into the bread slices. Dip in the egg mixture, making sure to coat well. Allow the liquid to drain off the bread, then place on the graham cracker crumbs, turning over to coat the other side as well.
  • Place the French toast in the hot pan, cook on each side until golden brown, about 4 minutes per side.
  • Serve warm.


Chocolate Stout Cheesecake Stuffed French Toast P

Green Beans with Bacon and Beer Glaze

Green Beans with Bacon and Beer Glaze

When I first got into cooking, I was terrified of pronunciation. There is this huge gap between reading a word, knowing it, being able to cook the crap out of it and being about to say it out loud. To other humans. Who have ears.

I spent an entire summer making Galettes. Look at these! So cute and rustic! With a homemade crust! and I can’t talk about them in public because I don’t know if it’s Guh-Lay or Gal-Let. DAMN IT!! (By the way, it’s Gah-Let).

Then came the Great Quinoa Explosion of 2007 and I wasn’t sure about that one either. Jesus Christ why is there so many vowels?! (It’s Keen-Wa, by the way).

So then we all get fancy and stop calling them green beans and the words haricots verts start coming my way. And even after I figured out it’s pronounced "ah-ree-koh-ver" I still can’t bring myself to say it that way, they are French green beans. Because I grew up on a farm and I drink beer.

Green Beans with Bacon and Beer Glaze3


Green Beans with Bacon and Beer Glaze


  • 4 slices bacon
  • 2 lbs French green beans
  • 1/2 cup stout
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
  • salt and pepper


  • In a cast iron skillet cook the bacon until crispy. Remove from pan and allow to cool, then chop.
  • Add the green beans to the hot skillet, sear until slightly browned.
  • Add the stout and reduce heat to a simmer. Cook until the beer is reduced and turned into a glaze, about ten minutes.
  • Sprinkle with smoked paprika. Salt and pepper to taste (depending on how salty the bacon is, more or less salt will be needed).
  • Sprinkle with chopped bacon.

Green Beans with Bacon and Beer Glaze2

Porter Caramelized Onion Flatbreads with Smoked Gouda and Roasted Tomatoes

Porter Caramelized Flatbreads with Smoked Gouda and Roasted Tomatoes_

A few years ago I decided that I need unbiased proof that I was actually good at this recipe development thing. That my recipes were good, not because the photos were pretty, or because they sounded good, or because some guy on twitter said he wanted to marry me.

But that an unbiased panel of experts thought they were good.

My solution to my self-esteem crisis was to enter recipe contests. The second one I entered was a chicken cook-off. Of course I choose chicken thights, and added a chipotle béarnaise and a few months later I got a call: I was in the finals. The unbiased panel of experts had chosen my recipe, along with 4 others, out of thousands of recipes that were submitted as the best that were entered. A few weeks later they shipped me off to San Diego to compete in a Chicken Challenge that ended with a giant foam core check with my name on it. I’d won.

Of course the $1000 check and trip to San Diego was a great prize, but the real trophy was the validation that I was actually good at this thing I want to dedicate my life to. At a post Winner Winner Chicken Dinner press conference I’d asked one of the chefs who had been a part of the original selection process what he looked for in a recipe, clearly he didn’t make all thousand submitted recipes.

He told me that all great entree recipes have these elements: fat, acid, protein, and a fresh herb. That’s what he looked for. Maybe that’s why I always reach from something green to sprinkle on top of the entrees I make.

Although he didn’t say anything about beer. Maybe he should re think his strategy.

Porter Caramelized Flatbreads with Smoked Gouda and Roasted Tomatoes 2

Porter Caramelized Onion Flatbreads with Smoked Gouda and Roasted Tomatoes


For the Crust:

  • 1 ¾ cups flour
  • 1 envelope yeast
  • 1 tsp white sugar
  • ½ tsp garlic salt
  • 2/3 cup malty beer brown ale, beligan ale, etc

For the Onions:

  • 2 tbs unsalted butter
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 2 sweet white onions sliced
  • pinch salt
  • pinch white sugar
  • 1 cup porter beer

For the Toppings:

  • 4 wt oz smoked gouda cheese sliced
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • 2 tbs flat leaf parsley chopped


  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment, add the flour, yeast, sugar and garlic salt. Mix until combined.
  • In a microwave safe bowl add the beer. Microwave on high for 20 seconds, test temperature with a cooking thermometer and repeat until temperature reaches between 120 and 125 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Add the beer to the stand mixer and mix on medium speed until most of the flour has been moistened.
  • Turn speed to high and beat until dough is smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes.
  • Transfer dough to a lightly oiled bowl, tightly wrap with plastic wrap. Allow to sit in a warm room until doubled in size, about 45 to 60 minutes (while the dough rises, start the onions).
  • Remove from bowl and add to a lightly floured surface. Knead several times, cut into 6 equal sized pieces.
  • One at a time form the dough into 6 inch circles. Place on a baking sheet that has been covered with parchment paper.
  • While the dough is rising, make the onions. In a saucepan or Dutch oven melt the butter with the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions with a pinch of salt and sugar, cook until softened, about 10 minutes. Add beer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the beer has mostly evaporated and turned to a glaze about 20 minutes. Make sure to keep the heat low or the onions will burn before they caramelize.
  • Preheat the oven to 400.
  • Add the tomatoes to a small bowl. Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper, set aside.
  • Top the 6 flatbreads with slices of Gouda, then add about ¼ cup of caramelized onions, then tomatoes.
  • Brush exposed crust with olive oil.
  • Bake at 400 for 12-15 minutes or until crust has turned golden brown.
  • Sprinkle with parsley just before serving.


Roasted Duck Legs with Porter Cherry Sauce

Roasted Duck with Porter Cherry Sauce

I didn’t grow up in a cooking household. With two working parents and seven sisters it was more of a defrost and feed the masses situation. It was culinary triage every day.

I never saw a head of garlic, or a homemade cake, or real whipped cream my entire childhood. The focus was on feeding the herd of people who lived at my house, while still trying to pay the bills. Homemade fancy sunday supper wasn’t at the top of that hierarchy of needs.

Which is why meals like this mean so much to me. Being able to throw my figurative heart and soul into a meal, take a few hours doing it, and serve it to people I care about. Even if it’s on a Tuesday night.

Especially if it’s on a Tuesday night.

Roasted Duck with Porter Cherry Sauce2

Roasted Duck Legs with Porter Cherry Sauce


  • ¼ cup rendered duck fat can sub olive oil, divided
  • 4 duck legs skin on
  • salt and pepper
  • ¼ cup chopped shallots
  • 3 cloves garlic grated with a microplane
  • ½ cup porter beer
  • 10 wt oz 1 ½ cupsdark sweet cherries, fresh or frozen (such as bing)
  • ¼ tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tbs honey


  • Preheat oven to 375.
  • Heat 2 tablespoons duck fat (or olive oil) in a large cast iron skillet over medium high heat.
  • Sprinkle the duck skin with salt and pepper.
  • Place the duck legs into the hot pan, skin side down, cook until skin has browned, about 6 minutes. Flip the duck legs overs.
  • Place the cast iron skillet in the oven for 1 ½ to 2 hours or until the duck reaches 165F degrees. (If you don’t have a large enough cast iron skillet, just brown the duck legs and then transfer them, skin side up, to a baking dish). You can reduce the oven to 200 and keep the duck in the oven until ready to serve for up to 1 hour. To crisp the skin back up (of it becomes soft in the oven), preheat the broiler and place the duck under the broiler for a few minutes, keeping a very close eye to make sure the duck doesn’t burn.
  • While the duck is cooking make the cherry sauce. In a pot over medium high heat add the remaining 2 tablespoons duck fat. Add the shallots and cook until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic. Add the porter, cherries, smoked paprika, black pepper and honey. Allow to boil, stirring frequently, until thickened, about 8 minutes.
  • Spoon the sauce over the duck just prior to serving, or serve alongside.

I use this Duck Fat (affiliate link) because it’s well priced and good quality. A little goes a long way so one jar will last a while. Also, if you cook duck in duck fat, you can save the rendered fat for later use. Like these potatoes, or this Duck Confit.

I also use this Microplane (affiliate link) all the time. Perfect for grating garlic in seconds, much easier than mincing with a knife.

Roasted Duck with Porter Cherry Sauce3

Beer Marshmallows with Chocolate Mint Beer Sauce

Beer Marshmallows with Mint Chocolate Stout Sauce

I told you last year that I wouldn’t further assault you with tales of my trip to Ireland for Saint Patrick’s day, until it was close to Saint Patrick’s Day.

Beer Marshmallows with Mint Chocolate Stout Sauce2

But here we are, just a week away. So I’ll force another story of Ireland down your throat. But I made you some beer marshmallows so I hope we can call it even.

The night after I arrived in Dublin, still jet-lagged and a bit shaky, I found myself at a table in the back of an old Irish pub with a couple of Irish farmers in their early twenties. A scrawny, fair-haired, Irish boy, who admitted that he’d never left the mossy soil of Mother Ireland, asked me about life in the famed Los Angeles. "So…you’ve, like, met famous people. Like movie stars? and people in bands?"

Beer Marshmallows with Mint Chocolate Stout Sauce3I said that I had. Just part of living in LA and having friends who work in music. It wasn’t a big deal. His eyes widened, he bought the next round and pressed me for details, "WHO HAVE YOU MET?!"

I was felt slightly pushed back and delved into the database of my past celebrity meetings. I wasn’t sure who he’d like to hear about so I started to go with my favorites, "Ummm. I met James Brown once. He told me I was pretty and did a spin for me."

He was confused. "Who’s that? Who else have you met? Do you know Madonna"

"No. But I did go to Elton Johns birthday party. It was small, only a handful of people but I was too nervous to talk to him. But I did spend the night talking with-"

"Let me cut to the chase." He turned serious, he wanted to get right to the information he was looking for, "I want to know if you’ve met THE GUY."

I was blank. Who was the GUY? Which guy?

Beer Marshmallows with Mint Chocolate Stout Sauce4


"You know!" The dozen Guinnesses he’d had since he’d left the sheep farm were starting to settle into his demeanor.

"I really don’t know. Who’s THE GUY in Hollywood?" I was more curious than confused.

Exasperated he finally spit it out, "EDDIE MURPHY!"

"Oh. No." If I’d had one million guesses I wouldn’t have pulled that name, "I haven’t met him."

"That’s too bad. But you know, he lives in LA. So, you might. Right? At some point, like at Starbucks or something?"

"Ummm, yeah. I guess there’s still hope."

Beer Marshmallows with Mint Chocolate Stout Sauce5

But, sadly I did leave LA  never having met Eddie Murphy. So unless he’s a Seahawks fan, we may never meet. But I do suspect that if he’s a beer drinker, he might like beer marshmallows. With stout chocolate sauce. And if he doesn’t, then it’s probably a good thing we never met.

Beer Marshmallows with Mint Chocolate Stout Sauce6


Beer Marshmallows with Chocolate Mint Beer Sauce


For The Marshmallows

  • Powdered sugar
  • 3 ½ envelopes unflavored gelatin such as Knox
  • 1 cup beer flat and cold*
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • ½ cup light corn syrup
  • 2 large egg whites
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 3 tsp vanilla extract

For the Chocolate Sauce

  • 10 wt oz dark mint chocolate I used Green & Blacks
  • 1/3 cup chocolate stout


  • Grease a 9x13 baking pan, sprinkle with powdered sugar until well coated, set aside.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer add ½ cup cold flat beer. Sprinkle with gelatin. Allow to stand while the sugar is being prepared.
  • In a large saucepan (mixture will bubble up considerably) over medium heat, add the remaining ½ cup beer, sugar and corn syrup. Stir until the sugar has dissolved.
  • Raise heat to high and allow to boil until the mixture reads 240F on a candy thermometer (about 6-8 minutes).
  • Once the temperature has been reached, turn off heat.
  • Turn the mixer on low and slowly pour the hot sugar mixture into the gelatin. Once all the sugar has been added turn the mixer on high until light and fluffy and tripled in volume, about 6 minutes.
  • While the mixer is running, prepare the egg whites. Add the egg whites to a bowl with the salt. Beat on high with a hand mixer until stiff peaks form.
  • Gently fold the egg whites and vanilla extract into the stand mixer ingredients until just combined.
  • Pour the marshmallows into the prepared pan. Sprinkle with powdered sugar. Allow to set at room temperature until set, about 2 hours. Remove from pan, cut into squares.
  • To make the chocolate sauce, add all chocolate sauce ingredients to a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 30 seconds, stir and repeat until melted.
  • Dip the marshmallows into the chocolate, remove with a fork, set on wax paper until set. Or just pour it on in a ridiculous but photogenic stream to make a delicious mess.


*The beer in these marshmallows can be very present. Pick a beer you like. Try to avoid really high hop beers, they can get really bitter. If you want a low beer flavor, pick a pilsner, pale lager, or wheat beer. You can also use a malty belgian or a brown ale. If you LOVE hops, you can use an IPA but take note that the beer bitterness will be very present.


Molasses Stout Glazed Salmon with Herb IPA Mashed Potatoes

Molasses Stout Glazed Salmon with Herb IPA Mashed Potatoes2

No matter how often you move, there are things that you forget. Every time. You forget that you won’t know which drawer to put Sharpie markers and batteries in (they always end up in the same drawer), you’ll turn to grab the knife from where is "used to be," you won’t know where the Target is, or where to take your dry cleaning, or where to buy the best prosciutto and you can forget about that guy who offered to sharpen your knives for free if you bring him cookies THAT guy doesn’t exist in your new land.

I have a gypsy soul, I’ve never missed my own bed, I don’t have the home sick gene, I’m never nervous about new roads or new words or new food. I look forward to building a new database of people and place. But there is a learning curve with a new place. Things I didn’t know that I didn’t know. I’ve had to adapt to a new climate, one that was not 80 degrees on Christmas, and involves a near wardrobe change when I need to run out to the car to grab the beer I left in the back.

But the upside is that beer would have been overly warm in my old land, in this place, it was the perfect 43 degrees and ready to drink.

Now I just need to find a guy to trade knife sharpening for baked goods and I’ll be half way there.

Molasses Stout Glazed Salmon with Herb IPA Mashed Potatoes


For The Potatoes

  • 2 lbs russet potatoes peeled and chopped
  • 6 tbs unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp sage minced
  • ½ tsp thyme. minced
  • ½ tsp rosemary minced
  • 3 tbs IPA beer

For the Salmon

  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • ¼ cup shallots
  • 2 tbs soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup stout
  • 2 tbs molasses not blackstrap
  • ¼ tsp smoked paprika
  • ¼ tsp chili powder
  • ¼ tsp onion powder
  • 4 4-6 ounce Salmon fillets


To Make the Potatoes:

  • Add the potatoes to a pot of lightly salted boiling water. Allow to boil until fork tender. Drain and return to pot.
  • Add the remaining potato ingredients, stir and mash with a potato masher until well combined.

To Make The Salmon:

  • Preheat oven broiler.
  • Add the oil to a pot over medium high heat until hot but not smoking.
  • Add the shallots, cook until softened and slightly browned, about 3 minutes.
  • Add the soy, stout, molasses, smoked paprika,onion powder and chili powder. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally until slightly thickened, about 6 minutes.
  • Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Spray lightly with cooking spray (or drizzle with vegetable oil.
  • Place salmon on the foil, skin side down.
  • Brush liberally with glaze.
  • Broil for 3 minutes, re-brush with glaze, and place under the broiler for 3 more minutes. Repeat (re-brushing and broiling) until the salmon is cooked through and flakes easily with a fork.
  • Serve over potatoes.

Molasses Stout Glazed Salmon with Herb IPA Mashed Potatoes_

Stout Soaked Mushrooms and Herbed Goat Cheese Crostinis


Photos from my Instagram account 

I made it.

From LA to Seattle, up Highway 1. Past fat lazy seals, miles of winding coastlines, epic Redwoods, and into an unusually sunny Seattle. Although the sun has now given way to the typical rain, it’s somehow comforting.

Although figuring out how to wield a camera in low light has been a bit challenging.

Stout Soaked Mushroom & Herbed Goat Cheese Crostini

But the food isn’t. This part of the word has gorgeous produce, fantastic seafood, incredible beer. I’m starting to get familiar with the Northwest breweries and the beautiful beer that I’m now so close to. If you know of a local brewery I should go to, please, I’m all ears.

Stout Soaked Mushroom & Herbed Goat Cheese Crostini4

As I unpack the boxes, rely heavily on my navigation to get around, figure out what local stations to set my car radio to,  and try to amend my ill-equipped wardrobe (warm socks?? I need new socks?), I’m excited to be here. My Gypsy Soul gets to wander a new city.

Stout Soaked Mushroom & Herbed Goat Cheese Crostini3

Stout Soaked Mushrooms and Herbed Goat Cheese Crostinis


  • 1 wt oz 1 ½ cups assorted dried mushrooms (I used Porcini, Shiitake & Chanterelle)
  • 12 ounces stout beer
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 2 tbs unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup chopped shallots
  • ½ tsp kosher or sea salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 1 baguette sourdough or French
  • 4 ounces chevre goat cheese softened
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh sage
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary


  • Put the mushrooms in a small bowl or jar. Cover with the stout beer. Leave at room temperature for at least 30 minutes and up to 2 hours or until the mushrooms are soft and have reconstituted.
  • Drain the mushrooms and rinse well to remove any residual grit.
  • Slice the mushrooms into thin slices (unless mushrooms were pre sliced).
  • In a pan over medium high heat melt the butter with the olive oil.
  • Add the shallots and cook until softened and starting to brown, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the mushrooms to the pan, sprinkle with salt and pepper, cook until most of the oil and butter has been absorbed, about 5 minutes.
  • Preheat the boiler on the oven.
  • Slice the baguette into 18-24 slices.
  • Place the slices on a baking sheet. Place until the broiler until golden brown, about 2 minutes, flip over and place under the broiler until golden brown the opposite side.
  • In a small bowl stir together the goat cheese, thyme, sage and rosemary.
  • Spread each slice with goat cheese, top with mushrooms.
  • Serve immediately.

Stout Soaked Mushroom & Herbed Goat Cheese Crostini5

Chocolate Porter Berry Cobblers

Chocolate Porter Berry Cobbler 3

There is this way that I make food that I can only really see in retrospect as a mirror to how I’m feeling. Messy food means that I’ve wandered into internal chaos. It’s OK, there are much less healthy ways of dealing with emotions than the culinary mood ring that my kitchen becomes.

There are some changes on my horizon, good changes, but ones that will put me on a new path. A path I’m ready for, excited for, but the thing about transition is you can only clearly see what you are giving up. What you have to gain is still a mystery, but you have a firm account of what will be lost in the shift. It takes faith in yourself, and those decision you’ve made, to keep your eyes firmly on the next trapeze bar after you’ve already let go of the one you were holding, flying through the air with nothing more than hope in what you’ve decided to do. Faith that the world will conspire in your favor.

I’m not going to keep you in the dark for long. I want you to join me in this transition, this journey. But today isn’t for that. Today is for eating chocolate, drinking beer and enjoying the moment. More about my figurative trapeze leap later.

Chocolate Porter Berry Cobbler_

Chocolate Porter Berry Cobbler

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 4 servings



  • ¾ cup flour
  • ¼ cup quick oats
  • ¼ cup white sugar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ cup chilled butter


  • 3 cups berries* thawed if frozen
  • 7 wt oz dark chocolate about 1 ¼ cups
  • ¾ cup porter or stout I used Stone Smoked Porter with Vanilla Bean


  • Add the flour, oats, both sugars, and salt to a food processor, pulse to combine.
  • Add the butter, process until combined.
  • Place in the freezer until the filling is ready.
  • In a double boiler over medium heat, add the chocolate and the beer, stir until melted, remove from heat.
  • Stir in the berries.
  • Place 4 oven safe bowls (8 to 10 fl oz size) on a baking sheet.
  • Add the filling to the bowls, about 2/3 full.
  • Add the topping until level with the top of the bowl.
  • Bake at 350 until golden brown, about 45-50 minutes.


I used a combination of strawberries, raspberries and blackberries. Because overly ripe berries are so hard to ship, most pickers choose those to freeze, making frozen berries of a very high quality. Don't be afraid to use frozen berries when baking, they are often the best choice and most often frozen in season rather then grown in greenhouses out of season like some berries often are in the winter.

Chocolate Porter Berry Cobbler 2

Chocolate Stout Pudding with Beer Whipped Cream

Chocolate Stout Pudding2

So I have this problem with comfort food.

Or more, the problem is with me. I find comfort in odd foods. For most people it’s warm food, or crispy carby foods, or cheesy foods. For me, it’s cold food. Sushi is my comfort food. And cereal (don’t judge). And to make this even more strange, ice cream is not on my list of cold comfort foods (you can now judge me). Maybe it’s because I live in a land that is 80 degrees on Christmas, or maybe because I’ve just never been all that normal.

Pudding is a comfort food for me. It has that Summer Visit to Grandmas House feeling, and this version is full of beer and chocolate. It’s cold, but oddly comforting, for those of us that take our comfort that way.

But then again, it’s chocolate and beer, maybe I’m more normal than I thought.

Chocolate Stout Pudding3

Chocolate Stout Pudding with Beer Whipped Cream

Servings 4 -6 servings


For the Pudding

  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 3 tbs cornstarch
  • 4 wt oz dark chocolate 60%, chopped
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • ¾ cup chocolate stout
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 tbs unsalted butter
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract

For the whipped cream

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 3 tbs stout
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract


  • In a large saucepan off heat whisk together the sugar and cornstarch. Add the cream, beer, and egg yolk, whisk until well combined. Add the chocolate.
  • Bring to a boil, stirring continually over medium heat. Whisk continually for 1 minute, remove from heat.
  • Add the butter and vanilla, stir until well combined.
  • Pour into serving containers, chill until set, about 2 hours.
  • To make the whipped cream, add the cream and powdered sugar to a stand mixer. Beat on high until soft peaks form. While mixer is running add the stout and vanilla, beat until soft peaks return.
  • Top pudding with whipped cream prior to serving.


Chocolate Stout Pudding6

Mushroom Orzo and Stout Soup

Mushroom Stout Orzo Soup_ Have I told you about the time I made a complete spectacle of myself on an international flight?

It all started after I missed my perviously scheduled flight out of Spain, which is another story that involves churros and a bull fighting poster, and found myself in the middle of a sold out Madrid without a bed for the evening. Every room was booked, even those large mixed dorms that make you want to sleep fully clothed with your valuables tethered to your leg.

I was able to find a room about three blocks from Plaza Mayor in the home of an elderly couple that spoke no English. After a few weeks in Spain my Spanish language skills had risen to the level of a demented toddler and I was able to communicate Tarzan style enough to pay for the windowless converted closet and obtain a set of keys.

After spending the next few hours fighting with the airline I was safely booked on a flight the next day and happily wandering the afternoon streets near the Prado. I wandered into a bookstore looking for something that would keep me occupied on a 17 hour flight. The only English language book I could find was Tuesdays with Morrie. Fine, I’ll take it.

That night I hardly slept. I was so nervous about missing my mid-day flight that I woke up every hour to check the clock. Finally at 5am I gave up. I packed my bags, left my keys on the overly polished dining table and headed for the two trains that would take me to the airport.

Many hours and cups of strong coffee later I was settled into my aisle seat on a jam-packed jumbo jet headed for LAX. Exhausted but unable to sleep (remember I told you I sleep as well as a homeless prostitute?) I pulled out the book. Only minutes in I started to cry, half hour later I was sobbing. Not just pretty girls tears,but hysterical, ugly, snot and weird noises sobbing. People started staring.

I put the book down, pulled myself together, but couldn’t stop reading. This continued for most of the flight. Read, become so hysterical I can’t see over my own tears, feel like a crazy person, put the book down, repeat. A few rows ahead of me a girl flagged down a flight attendant and said, "Ummm…I think there is something wrong with that girl."

A few minutes later the flight attendant comes by, says nothing, sets down a plate of food: a small baguette, some cheese and a small bowl of soup. She pulls a package of Kleenex out of her pocket and sets it down. She leaves very quickly without a word. I felt ridiculous, but comforted. Soup and carbs seems to do the trick.

January, a historically hideous month in my personal life, calls for some comfort food.  Bring it on January, I have soup and carbs. Mushroom Stout Orzo Soup 2

Mushroom Orzo and Stout Soup


  • 1 sweet white onion sliced
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 2 tbs unsalted butter
  • 8 wt oz sliced crimini mushrooms about 2 ½ cups
  • 3 wt ounces shitake mushrooms about 2 cups
  • 2 tsp chopped fresh sage
  • 3 cups beef stock
  • 12 ounces oatmeal stout
  • 1 cup dry orzo
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • salt to taste


  • In a pot over medium heat add the onions, olive oil and butter, cook stirring occasionally until onions have caramelized, about 20 minutes (do not let the heat get too high or the onions will burn before they caramelize).
  • Add both kinds of mushrooms and sage, cooking until the mushrooms have softened and darkened, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the stout and stock, simmer for fifteen minutes.
  • Add the orzo and black pepper, cooking until orzo is cooked through, about 8 minutes. Salt to taste.

I use my Dutch oven all the time, it’s essential in my kitchen.

Mushroom Stout Orzo Soup 3

Chocolate Stout Shortbread Cookies


Chocolate Stout Shortbread Cookies3

I need to start a petition.

To change the usually paring of Milk and Cookies to Beer and Cookies. First of all, it’s just a better idea. If you want to lure friends over, "Hey I’ve got beer and cookies" will go over much better than the alternative. Second, milk is gross. Sure, you turn it into butter, cream or cheese and I’m in. But a tall glass of liquid that was recently inside of a cow just makes me gag. I’m not sure if I have ever in my life drank a glass of milk that wasn’t in the form of blended ice cream. Not even as a kid, I was the juice and cookies type. Now, it’s beer. A nice milk stout is as close as you can get me.

So next time you find yourself at my house and I offer you cookies, don’t expect a glass of milk. But I will give you some good beer, and some cookies made with beer. So I hope that’s a good substitution.

Of course it is, it’s beer and cookies.

Chocolate Stout Shortbread Cookies2


Chocolate Stout Shortbread Cookies


For the Shortbread

  • 1 ½ cups butter softened
  • 1 ¼ cup sugar
  • ½ tsp almond extract
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 3 cups flour
  • 2 tbs cornstarch

For the chocolate layer:

  • 3 cups 18 wt. oz dark chocolate chips (60%)
  • 2 tbs heavy cream
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons chocolate stout or imperial stout
  • 1 tsp Fleur de sel or other flaky sea salt


  • Preheat oven to 325.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer add the butter, sugar, almond extract and vanilla extract. Beat until well combined, light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
  • Sprinkle with the salt, flour and cornstarch, mix until just combined.
  • Line a 9x13 baking pan with parchment paper. Press the shortbread dough into the bottom of the baking sheet in an even layer.
  • Prick all over with a fork.
  • Bake at 325 for 25-30 minutes or until the edges have just started to turn golden.
  • In the top of a double boiler (or a metal bowl set over a pot of water, but not touching the water) over gently simmering water, add the chocolate, cream and stout. Stir until the chocolate is smooth and melted. Pour over the shortbread in an even layer.
  • Sprinkle with salt. Chill until set, about 3 hours and up to overnight.
  • Cut into squares. Chill until ready to serve.

Chocolate Stout Shortbread Cookies

Chocolate Stout Ice Cream Sandwiches

Chocolate Stout Ice Cream Sandwiches. With a homemade, 5 minute, no-ice-cream-maker filling.

This is more of that inherent rebellion I told you about.

I’ll take a stout any day, but am more drawn to them in the middle of August when everyone else is reaching for those session IPAs. Ice cream is fine, but when it’s freezing outside, it’s the most appealing. When the summer heat hits triple digits, I like to make soup. Spicy soup that makes me sweat. I want to drink coffee at midnight and put beer in pancakes at 8am. As you can see, this can be a bit of an issue.

In my book Stout Ice Cream sandwiches in December is a middle ground. You get those seasonally appropriate stouts, cookies that seem to make their rounds this time of year and some ice cream to remind you that one day summer will come to us again.

Speaking of this ice cream, it really isn’t ice cream. It’s an ice box version that takes 5 minutes to make, no ice cream maker needed, and stays fairly stable at room temperature. So it’s like rebellious ice cream, that won’t melt at room temperature but tastes like it took you all day. I can get behind that.

Chocolate Stout Ice Cream Sandwiches. With a homemade, 5 minute, no-ice-cream-maker filling.


Chocolate Stout Ice Cream Sandwiches


For the Cookies:

  • 1 egg plus 1 additional yolk
  • ½ tsp vanilla
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp espresso powder
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 4 oz 62% Dark chocolate broken into chunks
  • ¼ cup stout

For the Ice Cream:

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3 tbs cocoa powder
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
  • 3 tbs imperial stout


  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the egg, yolk, vanilla and both kinds of sugar. Whip on high for ten minutes to create a frothy meringue like texture.
  • In a separate bowl, add the flour, cocoa powder, espresso powder and salt. Stir until combined.
  • In a microwave safe bowl, add the chocolate and the stout. Microwave on high for 30 seconds, stir and repeat until melted.
  • Mix the chocolate into the eggs until combined.
  • Sprinkle the flour, cocoa powder and espresso powder over the chocolate/egg mixture, stir until just combined. Place in the fridge and allow to chill until set up enough to scoop, about 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 375
  • Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Using a cookie scoop, drop equal amounts of dough evenly space on the cookie sheet.
  • Bake for 9-11 minutes, don't over bake. Allow to cool.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer add the whipped cream, powdered sugar and cocoa powder. Beat on high until stiff peaks form, slowly pour the 3 tablespoons stout into the mixer, beat until beer is incorporated into the whipped cream.
  • Spoon the whipped cream into the cookies. Refrigerate until firm, about 30 minutes and up to 24 hours. Allow to sit at room temperature for 10 minutes before serving.

Chocolate Stout Ice Cream Sandwiches. With a homemade, 5 minute, no-ice-cream-maker filling.




Mini Chocolate Stout Cheesecake with Salted Beer Caramel Sauce


Mini Chocolate Stout Cheesecakes with Beer Camel Sauce 3


I’m the kind of girl that brings beer to a baby shower.

Which works out well, when it’s a digital baby shower for the kind of girl who likes those sorts of things. Like my friend Bev who, in her multi tasking ways, is in the process of growing not one but two tiny humans in her guts. Which, in my book, means that she earned herself a few beers once her womb has been vacated.

The blogging community, much like the beer community, is about collaboration. It’s a rising tide lifts all ships, lets compare notes, share resource and support each other environment. We cheer each others successes, grieve with each other, Digital Bake Sale for each other, and throw these online parties to commemorate milestones. It’s a great community to be a part of. And I’ll never stop being grateful that I’ve found my way here.

In honor of Bev who is so crafty she makes two people at once, I’ve made some miniature beer infused cheesecakes. But don’t worry, the alcohol has cook off enough to make it safe for Pregnant Lady consumption*.


Mini Chocolate Stout Cheesecake with Salted Beer Caramel Sauce


For the Crust:

  • 3 cups mini pretzel twists
  • 1 tbs brown sugar
  • 1 tbs flour
  • 4 tbs melted butter

For the Cheesecake:

  • 3 oz about ½ cup dark chocolate (60%)
  • 1/3 cup Chocolate Stout
  • 8 wt oz cream cheese softened
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbs flour
  • 3 tbs cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp espresso powder

For the Sauce:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tbs light corn syrup
  • ½ cup stout
  • 3 tbs butter cut into cubes
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp sea salt


  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • In a food processor add the pretzels, flour and brown sugar. Process until just crumbs. While the food processor is running, slowly add the melted butter until well combined.
  • Add about 1 tablespoon of crust to each wells of a mini cheesecake pan that has been sprayed with cooking spray (if you don’t have a mini cheesecake pan, use muffin tins or mini muffin tins lined with cupcake papers). Press the crust firmly until compacted.
  • In the top of a double boiler over gently simmering water add the chocolate and the beer, stir until well combined and melted. Remove from heat, set aside.
  • In a stand mixer add the cream cheese, beat until light and creamy. Add the sugar and beat until well combined.
  • Add the egg, beating until well combined.
  • Add the flour, coco powder, salt and espresso powder, stir until just combined.
  • Stir in the chocolate mixture until well combined.
  • Add the cheesecake batter on top of the crust until wells are about 2/3 full.
  • Bake at 350 until the cheesecakes are set and top has puffed slightly, about 20-25 minutes (time will vary depending on the size of your mini cheesecakes).
  • Allow to cool to room temperature, while the cheesecakes cool a dip will form in the top.
  • While the cheesecakes bake, make the sauce.
  • In a saucepan over high heat add the sugar, beer and corn syrup. Whisk until sugar has melted, then stop stirring.
  • Allow to boil until dark golden brown and has reached 230 on a candy thermometer, about 6-8 minutes. Turn off heat and immediately stir in the butter and the vanilla ( mixture will bubbly up furiously). Allow to cool for about ten minutes.
  • Once cool, remove cheesecakes from pan (if using the mini pans, it may be necessary to run a sharp knife around the edges).
  • Gently spoon the caramel into the well that formed in the top of the cheesecakes.
  • Sprinkle with sea salt.
  • Refrigerate until chilled, about 2 hours.

*Disclaimer: consuming alcohol while pregnant is ill-advised. If you have concerns about the consumption of cooked alcohol while pregnant, consult your doctor. I’m not a physician, taking medical advice from me is also ill-advised. If you want more information about the rate at which alcohol cooks off, read this.


Check out the other Baby Shower recipes:

Bacon Cotija Guacamole from Gaby Dalkin
Gruyère Gougères from Shaina Olmanson
Lemon Risotto Tarts from Kelly Salemi
Goat Cheese Crostini with Pesto and Roasted Red Peppers from Liz Della Croce
Spinach and Feta Quinoa Bites from Aggie Goodman
Roasted Red Grape, Brie and Rosemary Flatbread from Laurie McNamara
The Fastest Appetizer Ever from Brooke McLay
Apple Pear Tart – Two Ways from Sarah Glyer

Chocolate Chai Frappe from Brandy O’Neill
Cherry Chocolate Kiss Smoothie from Amy Flanigan
Cranberry Sorbet Bellini – Non-Alcoholic and Alcoholic from Megan Keno
Peppermint Mocha Affogato from Christina Lane
toasted marshmallow cream hot chocolate from Jessica Merchant
Pomegranate Lemonade Punch from Heather Christo

Kale Salad with Pomegranate, Orange and Pine Nuts from Rachel Gurk
Pear Cranberry Arugula Salad from Tracy Benjamin
Brussels Sprout Salad + maple roasted cranberry dressing from Katie Unger
Gluten-Free Pasta Salad from Lisa Thiele
Hearty Roasted Winter Vegetable Salad with Honey Ginger Dressing from Heather Disarro
Winter Citrus Salad from Catherine McCord

Creamy Roasted Red Pepper and Chicken Sausage Pasta from Heidi Larsen
Eggplant Parmesan Lasagna from Joanne Ozug
cheesy chicken enchilada 'double' stacks from Lauren Grier
Jalapeno Popper Chicken Soup from Kevin Lynch
Thai Spiced Chicken with Coconut Cream Swiss Chard from Brandi Evans
Sausage and Red Pepper Quiche from Tasty Kitchen
Roasted Red Pepper Pasta with Goat Cheese from Julie Deily

Soft and Chewy Oatmeal Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies from Averie Sunshine
Glazed Dulce de Leche Pound Cake from Meagan Micozzi
Mississippi Mud Pie Brownie Ice Cream from Megan DeKok
Buttermint Frosted Sugar Cookie Cups from Shelly Jaronsky
4-Ingredient Peanut Butter Chocolate Cookies from Ali Ebright
Sweet Potato Creme Brulee from Brian Samuels
Whole Wheat Double Chocolate Mint Cookies from Aimée Wimbush-Bourque
Mini Chocolate Stout Cheesecake with Salted Beer Caramel Sauce from Jackie Dodd
Red Velvet Hi Hat Cookies from Kristan Roland
Double Chocolate Panini from Kathy Strahs

Chocolate Stout Candy Cane Cake & Christmas Beers

Chocolate Stout Candy Cane Cake


Chocolate Stout Candy Cane Cake

"Christmas Beer" is a bit of a broad term. It’s isn’t really a style since brewers are free to bring anything from an IPA to a barrel aged stout to the holiday beer table. It’s more of an opportunity. An opportunity for beer people to do get creative, draw inspiration from the season, and make a beer that’s infused with Holiday Cheer (specific, right?).

Often the beers that earn that cheerful Holiday label are malty, slightly higher ABV (alcohol by volume), low hop and include some of those spices we tend to see in Christmas food. Cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves are frequently power players in Christmas Ales. Chocolate and chestnuts often make an appearance as well.

I have a few for you to seek out, but this list is in no way a "best of" compilation, a Mix Tape of Christmas beers, or a final say in all things boozy Christmas. It’s just a jumping off point, some beers to get you started on your Christmas Beer Quest. If you have a favorite, please chime in. That’s what the comment section is for.

Christmas Ales

12 Beers of Christmas

  1. Schlafly Christmas Ale Categorized as a Winter Warmer ale, this is a malty, low hop, 8% ABV flavor treat. It has notes of juniper, cardamom, cinnamon, and oranges. Count yourself among the fortunate if you happen to be in the limited distribution zone of the Schlafly brewery.
  2. Great Lakes Christmas ale  This award-winning Christmas Ale seems to have a bit of a cult following. Another malty Winter Warmer with spiced notes along with some gingerbread, caramel and a 7.5% abv. This will keep you warm on a snow day.
  3. Port Brewing Santa’s Little Helper Not to be confused with those other beers by the same name, this Helper is a 10% ABV Russian Imperial Stout with notes of cocoa, coffee and dark cherries. There is also a barrel aged version if you’re lucky enough to get your grubby paws on it.
  4. New Belgium Accumulation White IPA This is a style you don’t often see show up to the Christmas Ale party. A hopped up white IPA with bright notes of citrus, tropical fruit and sweet malt to remind you that winter won’t last forever.
  5. Deschutes Jubelale  A yuletide celebration in a bottle. This dark and malty ale has notes of chicory, spice and dried fruit. It’s the perfect beer to wash down that fruitcake. And make you look forward to eating fruitcake.
  6. Bison Gingerbread Ale This organic brewery out of the Bay Area is just the type of people you want to root for. Especially when they make a beer like this. It’s a dark beer with notes of molasses, dark malts, spices and of course gingerbread cookies.
  7. The Bruery 12 Days of Christmas Series Those mad brewing geniuses over at The Bruery have embarked on a 12-year Christmas ale event that results in one new 12 Days of Christmas themed beer every year. They are halfway through the quest, releasing their Six Geese A Laying Belgian Strong Dark ale just last month. It’s malty as well as bright with notes of cranberries, cherries, citrus, and plums.
  8. Rogue Santa’s Private Reserve A variation of their Saint Rogue Red, this hopped up red ale with a beautiful malt finish and some nice spice notes is a great beer to pair with your Christmas dinner.
  9. Avery Old Jubilation An Old English Ale with notes of toffee, mocha, hazelnuts and lots of malt. This drinkable treat is worth the wait each year.
  10. Boulevard Nutcracker Ale With lots of malt, molasses, brown sugar and winter spices, this is a beer that will keep you warm by that winter fire.
  11. Alaskan Winter Ale An Old English ale brewed up where they know a thing or two about cold winters. This winter beer has both a malty richness and crisp brightness with notes of spruce, cherries, and honey.
  12. Souther Tier 2XMAS It’s a Swedish Christmas in a bottle. Brewed with figs, orange peels and spices this is a beer that brings a European style Christmas to a beer bottle. This is a great one to pair with sausages or strong cheese.

Chocolate Stout Candy Cane Cake2

Chocolate Stout Candy Cane Cake


For the Cake:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter softened
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • optional: ¼ tsp peppermint extract
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • ¾ cup stout or porter beer
  • 1/3 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1 2/3 cups cake flour
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp espresso powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp salt

For the frosting:

  • 10 wt oz dark chocolate
  • 1/3 cup stout
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • ¼ cup crushed candy canes


  • Preheat oven to 325.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer beat the butter and both kinds of sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  • Add the eggs and vanilla extract (peppermint if using) and beat until well combined.
  • In a microwave safe bowl add the chocolate chips and the stout. Microwave on high for thirty seconds, stir and repeat until the chocolate and beer are well combined.
  • Add the chocolate to the butter and mix until well combined, stopping to scrape the bottom of the mixer to insure the butter and chocolate are well combined. Stir in the buttermilk.
  • In a small bowl mix together the flour, cocoa powder, espresso powder, baking powder and salt.
  • Sprinkle the dry ingredients over the wet ingredients and stir until combined.
  • Pour the batter into a large loaf pan that has been sprayed with cooking spray.
  • Bake at 325 for 65-75 minutes or until a tooth pick inserted in the center comes back with just a few crumbs attached.
  • Allow to cool before removing from pan.
  • To make the frosting add the chocolate, cream and beer to a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 30 seconds, stir and repeat until melted and smooth.
  • Allow the frosting to cool for about 5 minutes and then pour gently over the cake.
  • Sprinkle with crushed candy canes. Chill until the frosting has set, about 30 minutes.

I made this once with the peppermint extract and once without. I have a well documented aversion to mint, so I preferred it without. But if you want to reiterate the Candy Cane flavor and like mint, adding it is a good option.


Chocolate Stout Candy Cane Cake3