This is what happens when I can’t decide if going to the grocery store is worth it. I wanted to make this with crawfish, but as you can assume, that’s not exactly a pantry staple in Seattle. Then I did the thing where I debated with myself if it was worth going to the store to try to find what I wanted.
But as we’ve already discussed, I can be kinda lazy, but I’m good at tricking myself into thinking I’m not. So I didn’t go to the store because "social distancing", and "public safety", blah blah. But really, it was because I got lazy and pants seemed like a hurdle I didn’t want to tackle.
I did have chicken, so that was what I used, and it was amazing. This is authentic cooking, it’s pandemic cooking, it’s "use what you have to make something delicious" cooking. Which, honestly, was a bad thing because all it did was reinforce my laziness. I lazied and it worked for me, which makes me far more likely to do it that next time. Let’s hope all future lazy decisions yield something as delicious as this beer chicken etouffée.
Add the olive oil and butter to a large pan over medium heat until the butter is melted. Sprinkle with flour. Whisk over medium heat until the roux is the color of milk chocolate, about 15 minutes.
Add the onion, celery, carrot, and bell pepper, cook until the vegetables have softened.
Sprinkle the chicken on all sides with salt.
Add the chicken to the pan, cooking until browned.
Stir in the garlic.
Add the beer, scraping to deglaze the pan.
Add the broth, hot sauce, creole seasoning, Worcestershire sauce, molasses, and black pepper. Simmer until the sauce has thickened.
Add desired amount of rice to bowls, spoon the chicken over the rice, sprinkle with parsley.
Blackstrap molasses is what happens when you boil cane juice three times, removing nearly all the sugar resulting in a black, bitter sludge. Dark, light or unsulphured are all fairly interchangeable and pleasantly sweet. Make sure never to use Blackstrap when a recipe calls for molasses unless it’s specifically called for.
Puff Pastry Churro Curls with Chocolate Stout Dipping Sauce
I’ve been taking stock quite a bit lately, haven’t you? What’s in the pantry (how did I get pickled raisins and why do I still have them?), what’s in my life (so many good people), what I’m grateful for (lots and lots).
This helps, I promise. It helps you make dinner, helps you get out of bed, helps you to stay present. These are all things we need right now. In a previous life, I was a social worker for gang kids in South Central Los Angeles, and I actually have a Masters Degree in Psychology. Which totally helps me cook with beer, obviously.
But I will tell you this, when anxiety starts to creep up on you, the simplest way to keep it at bay is to sit in the moment. "I’m ok, right now, I’m fine". Take a deep breath, focus on what’s in the room around you. For me, cooking and baking help. It helps me to stay focused on the task at hand, and gives me something to look forward to, even if that’s just fake churros.
If you can pay your bills, feed your family, and if that family is healthy, you are really, really fortunate. It’s ok to be a mess right now, that’s normal. Let yourself feel it for a second, then pull yourself back and remember that you’re ok, and you’re doing pretty damn good. Then make yourself some puff pastry churros because you’ve earned it.
Puff Pastry Churro Curls with Chocolate Stout Dipping Sauce
Chocolate Stout Brownie Bread, one bowl and just a few minutes!
I’ve been inundation you with posts lately, please give me a pass. You’re my therapy, truly. Cooking you things, and baking you a loaf cake that I call "bread" because it doesn’t sound as bad calling it a cake, is the way I’m coping with all of this.
I’m sitting here in Seattle, the hotbed of uncertainty, and all I can think about is keeping busy while not leaving my house. So this equals cooking and baking. Baking all the things, and spoiling myself with a beerified-chocolate cake that’s masquerading as bread.
But this is what we have to do. We have to spoil ourselves and those sheltered in place with us with things we wouldn’t normally let ourselves indulge in. Everything is suspended: events, concerts, office life, diets, low self-esteem.
Indulging in chocolate is not suspended, it’s back on the air and bigger than ever. This bread-not-cake-I-swear is super easy, it takes about 5 minutes to get it into your oven and about an hour to get it into your face. And you have earned yourself a loaf of this stuff, and you are not allowed to feel guilty about it because that has been suspended, too.
Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, cornstarch, salt and sugar to a bowl, stir to combine. Add the eggs, vanilla, sour cream, vegetable oil, beer, and chocolate chips. Stir to combine.
Pour into an 8 ½ x 4 ½ inch loaf pan.
Bake until the top has puffed and is hard, about 40-50 minutes.
Remove from oven, allow to cool to room temperature. Cut into slices to serve.
If you’re like me, and I kind of think you are, you have two opposite feelings, nearly back to back, and it’s unsettling.
My thoughts jump from "Everyone needs to settle down, you are all overreacting!" to "Are we all going to die and is our society going to collapse and I need to form a post-apocalypse tribe immediately,"
"Self-quarantine is great, and my neighbors are the best and I want to stay like this forever," and then the next minute: "Will I ever travel again, I need to be on a virus-free plane immediately or I’ll die because my wanderlust is killing me, and I need my local bars and restaurants to re-open soon, I miss them so much,"
It’s all so disorienting. Just know that you’re not alone, we are all in this together even if it feels lonely.
My favorite part of pre-apocalypse grocery shopping is the "weird" ingredients are always left. The chicken breast and pork chops are long gone but the more obscure meat is in abundance and on sale. My particular grocery store had rows and rows of oxtails, shanks, and boneless pork ribs, and I’m hoping yours does too. So I made you something. It’s easy and since you’ll be home all day, you should make it. It’s really good and you’ll only want coconut rice from now on, so make sure to add cans and cans of coconut milk to your next venture out in your hazmat suit.
Bulgogi Portobello Mushroom Wraps with Pickled Mint Slaw
There are days when I feel this is my only useful skill. Feed people. Make food. Cook and bake. So, that’s what I’ll do. I don’t have anything else to offer right now, but I can make you some food that tastes good, a small distraction and something to look forward to.
It’s like practical self-care, food that you want to eat, want to serve to people. Something to plan for that you know won’t get canceled. Even if that plan is just dinner and a beer with the person you’re quarantined with. It’s time to take joy in small things, and do what you can to spread it around. It’s the good kind of contagious.
Bulgogi Portobello Mushroom Wraps with Pickled Mint Slaw
Guinness Corned Beef Tacos with Pickled Cabbage Slaw Diageo Beer Company USA, sponsored this post. Partnerships with The Beeroness and outside companies only occur when the company’s products are ones I use and enjoy myself. All ideas, words, and opinions are my own.
Every once in a while the stars align and a holiday falls on just the right day. Like when Halloween is on a Saturday or Cinco De Mayo is on Thirsty Thursday, it just clicks it up a notch.
This year, Saint Patricks Day is on Taco Tuesday, which will obviously necessitate Irish Tacos. What are Irish Tacos, you say?! Great question. Corned Beef and beer tacos, of course.
Guinness is the unofficial, official beer of Saint Patrick’s day so I teamed up with them to give a beered up corned beef taco to make all your Saint Patrick Taco Tuesday dreams come true.
Guinness Corned Beef Tacos with Pickled Cabbage Slaw
3tablespoonscuring saltthis will make the meat pink
3tablespoonwhole allspice berries
3(12 ounces) bottles of Guinness Extra stout
½red onionthinly sliced
2cupsapple cider vinegar
For the Tacos
In a large pot or Dutch oven, add brown sugar, curing salt, kosher salt, allspice berries, cloves, ginger, mustard seeds, peppercorns, along with the water.
Cook on high just until the salt and sugar dissolve, remove from heat. Add 2 bottles of stout (reserve the last bottle for cooking) and ice, stir until ice has melted and brine is cool.
Add the brisket, cover with a lid and refrigerate for 5 days and up to 10.
Remove from brine and rinse well. Discard the brine and clean the Dutch oven.
Place the brisket back in the cleaned pot, along with the onion, pour the remaining bottle of stout and then cover with cold water until the brisket is fully cover with about one inch of water above the beef.
Bring to a low boil, cover and reduce heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Simmer for 3 hours or until the meat is fork-tender. Move to a carving board, thinly slice against the grain.
While the brisket cooks, make the pickled slaw. In a saucepan over medium heat, add the lemon juice, vinegar, salt, sugar, ginger, allspice, cloves and peppercorns in a pot.
Bring to simmer just until the salt and sugar dissolve, remove from heat. Allow to cool to room temperature.
In a large bowl, add the cabbage and onion. Pour the cooled pickling liquid over the cabbage and onion, refrigerate for one hour and up to a week (this can be done well in advance).
Fill the tortillas with beef and top with pickled slaw.
To use a pre-cured corned beef, skip the curing step and go right to the cooking part in step 5 step.You’ll only need one bottle of Guinness Extra Stout, an onion from the list of ingredients in the “for the corned beef” section, plus a cured, uncooked, corned beef brisket.
I like to taco things that shouldn’t be tacoed. Speaking of, "tacoed" is another one of those words that Autocorrect and I disagree on the validity of, like beerified and hangry.
And while we are on the topic of things people will disagree with me on, I’m fairly certain there is more than one person who would disagree with my decision to put all the things into tortillas and call them tacos. These are not my people.
You’re on my side with this, I’m pretty sure. Because if I put anything in a homemade tortilla, hand it to you with a beer, you’ll eat it. And you’ll let me call it a taco even if it’s fairly ridiculous to do so. "You made me a cake taco!" you would say, and eat it even if it’s pretty insane. That’s why you’re my people, nothing is off-limits when it comes to handheld dinners and beer.
These tacos do happen to be my new favorite accidentally vegan meal so anyone against my tacoing kung pao cauliflower doesn’t get any. It’s harsh but necessary, we need to have some limits with those people anyway.
4-5dried chili Arbol podschopped (more chilies will make it hotter)
For the tacos:
12corn tortillashomemade, or La Tortilla Factory if store-bought
¼cupchopped green onions
3tablespoonsnutsshelled peanuts, pistachios, or cashews
Heat 4 inches of canola oil in a pot over medium-high heat. Clip a deep-fry thermometer on the side and bring oil to 350F, adjust heat to maintain this temperature.
In a large bowl whisk together the flour, salt, garlic powder, soda, black pepper, and cornstarch.
Stir the beer into the flour bowl, whisk until combined adding additional beer or flour until the batter is just slightly thinner than that of pancake batter.
Turn the oven to 175F. Place a wire rack over a baking sheet, add the baking sheet to the oven.
One at a time dip the florets into the batter until well coated, allow the excess to slip off back into the bowl, then add to the hot oil. Fry until golden brown on all sides, about 4 minutes, then transfer to the baking sheet in the oven to keep warm until all cauliflower is done.
Add all the sauce ingredients to a pot over high heat. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally, until the sauce has thickened, about 3 minutes
Add the cauliflower to the tortillas, drizzle with sauce, sprinkle with green onions and nuts. Serve immediately.
Gochujang Stout BBQ Burger with Fried Shallots and Blistered Shishitos
This is basically an amalgamation of my neurosis, it’s true. First came my full-blown obsession with Shishito peppers that turned in me making them for a dinner party, then for myself, eating all alone over the sink, THEN I had to make something for you because the world needs shishito peppers right now! But it doesn’t end there.
From there the snow started falling into my life with a vengeance and my California blood started to panic since I’m basically a lizard on a rock and I need all the sun all the time, and this led me—no, FORCED me— to make burgers. I became what is the human equivalent of a labrador left alone too long chewing on the curtains and my cabin fever was convinced that summertime food was the only answer. And that means burgers, obviously.
So basically, what I’m trying to say in my rambling way, is that this burger, THIS BURGER, is the indoor cooking cure to the wintertime blues that we all need in our lives right now. It’s true, make it and you will feel better. Or at least full, and that’s always better than hungry.
Gochujang Stout BBQ Burger with Fried Shallots and Blistered Shishitos
1large shallot blubpeeled and sliced into 1/8 inch slices (about 1/3 cup)
Oil for frying
For the Shihitos:
½teaspoonflakey sea salt
For the burgers:
Prep the beef:
Form the beef into 4 equal-sized patties, wider than the bun (it will shrink as it cooks) and fairly thin. Add to a plate, refrigerate until very cold, about 1 hour (can be done up to 24 hours in advance).
Make the barbeque sauce:
Add all the barbeque sauce to a pan over medium heat. Simmer, stirring frequently, until thickened. Set aside.
Make the shallots:
Add the flour, salt and pepper to a small bowl, stir to combine. Add the sliced shallots, toss to coat. Remove with a fork, shaking off the excess flour.
Add about ½ inch of oil to a pan over medium heat until hot but not smoking. Add the shallots, reduce heat to medium, cooking on both sides until crispy, and browned, about 10 minutes (make sure the oil isn’t too hot or the shallots will burn). Remove from oil, allow to drain on a stack of paper towels.
Make the shishitos:
Heat the sesame oil in a large skillet until very hot. Add the shishitos, allowing to blister on one side before turning with tongs (be careful, the oil will pop), allow to drain on a stack of paper towels, sprinkle with salt while still hot.
Make the patty:
Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Salt and pepper the patties liberally on all sides. Add to the skillet, cook on both sides until the meat is medium-rare, about 3 minutes on each side.
Assemble the burgers:
Add the patty, top with barbecue sauce, shishitos, shallots and cilantro, serve immediately
Stout S’mores & Pretzel Fudge (no gelatin, vegetarian safe!)
I know, I KNOW! This was supposed to get to you a week ago, but that’s what sort of month I’m having. I was all set to edit the photos and get this up and then this happened so I’ve been having a hard time adulting ever since.
But I am offering my dog sitting services for free to anyone with a nice fuzzy creature that needs love in the greater Seattle area because I need to console myself with petting all the furry things.
This is also when chocolate comes in handy, you should always have some on hand in case of an emotional emergency. It’s my current means of coping and all pet related tragedies. I also made another batch of these and only gave away about half of them to keep the rest for myself, I’m Ok with this level of selfishness at this current moment in time.
And I only gave away one square of these Stout S’mores & Pretzel Fudge so I should probably work on my sharing before it’s too late and I’m known as the person who hoards chocolate treats. It’s my New Year’s goal.
Add the graham crackers and pretzels to a food processor, process until finely ground. Add the melted butter, process until well combined. Press into the bottom of a 9x13 pan (or use a 7x11 for thicker bars) until well compacted.
Bake for 12 minutes.
Make the fudge:
Add the chocolate, sweetened condensed milk, vanilla extract, beer and salt to the top of a double boiler (or a metal bowl set over a pot of gently simmering water).
Stir over medium-low heat (make sure the water does not boil) until most of the chocolate has melted. Remove from heat, continue to stir until all the chocolate has melted.
Pour over the crust, refrigerate until set, about 30 minutes.
Make the marshmallow layer:
Add the egg white and cream of tartar to a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat until light and foamy.
Add 1 tablespoon sugar and beat until stiff peaks form
In a saucepan, add the water (or beer), agave, and 1/3 cup sugar.
Cook over medium heat while stirring until the mixture reaches 248°F on a candy thermometer. This will take about 6-8 minutes.
Once the corn syrup mixture is ready, turn the mixer on medium and in a slow steady stream, pour the corn syrup mixture into the beaten egg whites.
Once all of the corn syrup mixture has been added, beat on high for 5 minutes until the mixture is stiff and glossy.
Add vanilla extract and beat on high 1 minute.
Spread over the fudge in an even layer. Chill until ready to set, about 15 minutes.Brulee with top with a kitchen torch, or place under the broiler until browned.
Cut into squares, chill until ready to serve.
Yes, you CAN use Marshmallow Fluff instead. But it needs to be kept refridgerated or it will slide all over the place.
It turns out, you’re not alone. This week, according to the internet and science, is the most stressful week of the year. I feel it, it’s been an asshole of a week, do you feel it? I didn’t shower yesterday and I’m still in my pajamas. At NOON! This is the reality when you work at home. Actual real-life fact.
Because of all of this, I needed an appetizer that is a never-fail type. A tried-and-true type. Bacon-wrapped dates it is. Goat cheese is my go-to when stuffing these suckers because I like the tang against the sweet and rich bacon-date combo. But you do you—any cheese will work (but some cheese is super melty and will ooze out, but that’s ok, it will still taste great).
And I wanted to smother them in sugar and beer because sometimes I like to live vicariously through my food. Another actual fact.
Thank GOD for beer mail because I didn’t even have to leave my house to get this gorgeous bottle of port barrel-aged Belgian quad from Barbarian Brewing which just so happened to pair perfectly with these little nuggets. Beer makes things less stressful.
Anyway, guys, I think I need to shower and eat my weight in bacon. Not sure if it will happen in that order.
This is one of those unimpressive-very-impressive dishes. Sounds impressive, tastes impressive, but requires a very unimpressive amount of skill. Some things take skill, lots of it, years of it. Some things just take a long bath in the oven and they come out just right. Every time. In a forgiving sort of way that requires no pre-acquired meat knowledge.
Short ribs are those things, short ribs are my friends because friends forgive, a lot. It’s really hard to screw up short ribs, just remember: long, slow, low. Not too low, and long is up to interpretation, but it’s a general rule. As long as you leave these suckers in the oven long enough (you can’t rush short ribs, but you can ignore them for hours) they will reward you with a meal that you can at least pretend you slaved over. People will believe you.
Short ribs also really like it when you make them in advance and they get to have a nice little sleepover in your fridge. They’re that sort of friend. Give them a beer, let them spend the night, and they’ll make you look good the next day. It’s a great way to prepare for a dinner party that may or may not involve a human sleepover. Enough of these ribs and some beer and people won’t want to leave your house, so you should probably make up the guest room just in case.
Chocolate Stout Cookies with Salted Dulce De Leche Filling (pressure cooker or stovetop) the filling is TOO easy to make it’s almost not fair!
Don’t make these. Seriously, turn back now while you still can!! Because once you make them and realize how easy it is to make SALTED Dulce de Leche sandwiched between two fudgy-but-crispy-and-chewy ridiculously good cookies you will be ruined. RUINED for all other cookies. You will never forget them and they will haunt your days and nights.
Why are you still here?! I told you to turn back. But, I know you. You’re like me and the second someone tells you not to do a thing, you want to do the thing even more. So you’re going to do the thing. These cookies are the thing. Fine. There is nothing I can do.
BUT I will make a suggestion because it’s what I’m going to do. You should buy a bunch of those Weck jars we love so much and make that Dulce de Leche in large batches and give it out as Christmas gifts as an excuse to make this filling again and lick all the spoons.
Chocolate Stout Cookies with Salted Dulce De Leche Filling
Pressure cooker method: Remove the top of the can of sweetened condensed milk. Cover with aluminum foil.
Add the cooking rack to the bottom of a pressure cooker or Instant Pot. Add the prepared can. Pour water in the pressure cooker until about halfway up the side of the can. (for stovetop method, see note*)
Cover tightly, making sure the steam vent is closed.
Cook on high for 60 minutes. Allow the steam to vent naturally. Once the can has cooled, remove from the pressure cooker.
Stir in the vanilla and salt, refrigerate until ready to use.
Make the Cookies
Preheat the oven to 375° F.
Separate the eggs. Add the salt to the whites and beat the whites until light and frothy.
While beating the whites add ½ cup powdered sugar to the whites a little at a time, beat until firm, as if making meringue.**
Add the remaining powdered sugar and cocoa powder, stir until combined.
Stir in the vanilla, beer, and egg yolks until well combined.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Use a cookie scoop to mound cookies onto the parchment.
Bake for 14 minutes. Pull the parchment onto the counter to allow the cookies to cool.
Spread the filling between two cookies. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
*To make Dulce de Leche on the stovetop, peel the label off the can but do not open. Add the can to a large pot of water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer checking every 30-minutes that the water is still above the can, adding more when it gets low. Simmer for 3 hours. Remove can with tongs or slotted spoon, allow to cool to room temperature (contents are are under pressure, do not open until cooled). Or you can add the cans to a slow cooker, cover with water and cook on low for 8 hours, allow to cool naturally before opening. Continue with step 5.**It is essential to whip the egg whites until firm. If not, the cookies will have too much moisture and spread. If you aren't sure if you have whipped them enough, just freeze the cookies for 15 minutes prior to baking (after you have scooped them into balls), and bake for 16 minutes.
Stout Chocolate and Vanilla Beer Cream Pie with Rum Whipped Cream
Friends, you need to make a decision. Let’s say you’re on a deserted (dessert-ed?) island and you can only have one pie, what would it be? Don’t get too caught up with that fact that you’re on an island you don’t NEED pie, you need matches and a hatchet and shelter, just go with it. It’s a pie island and you can have as much pie as you want. But only one kind, what do you pick?
At first, I might think of apple pie, it’s a classic and I love it. Or cherry? I love cherry. But if it’s one and only forever, I’d probably settle on chocolate after much hesitation and deliberation with the pie island procurement staff becoming irritated with me. BECAUSE IT’S CHOCOLATE.
So I decided that for the holidays I must make a chocolate pie, and it must be made with beer, and this beer was outstanding. Luckily for me, I have a few of these Odell Brewing Barreled Treasure stouts left and they will most certainly be saved for holiday dessert service. Where I will serve several pies and you don’t have to choose just one. You can be the guy who has three slices of pie at once, as long as you have them with this beer.
Also, it needs to be said that adding hazelnuts to my chocolate graham cracker crust is the best decision I’ve made all year.
Stout Chocolate and Vanilla Beer Cream Pie with Rum Whipped Cream
Add the graham crackers, brown sugar, and hazelnuts to a food processor, process until well combined. While the food processor is running, add the melted butter, process until combined.
Starting with the sides press well into the bottom of a 9-inch springform or pie pan. Press well using the bottom of a heavy glass or measuring cup.
Add all the ingredients for the chocolate layer into a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high for 30 seconds, stir and repeat until melted and combined (alternately, this can be done in the top of a double boiler).
Pour into the crust in an even layer. Refrigerate until set, about 15 minutes.
Make the vanilla layer: Add the cream, beer, and vanilla to a pot over medium heat. Heat until bubbles start to form at the edges and just starting to simmer.
In a large bowl whisk together the egg yolks, sugar, and salt until well combined. While whisking, slowly add the cream mixture until well combined with the yolks (don’t add the hot cream too quickly or it will turn into scrambled eggs).
Add the mixture back into the pot, bring to a simmer, stirring constantly until thickened, about 10 minutes.
Pour over the chocolate layer in an even layer. Bake at 325°F for 35 minutes or until the edges have started to puff, the pie will still be very jiggly. Refrigerate until set, at least 3 hours. Pie is best made the day before.
Add all the whipped cream ingredients to the bowl of a stand mixer, mix on high until soft peaks form, add to the pie in an even layer. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
This is something you need to be warned about. At least I did and I think we are alike, you and I. When I first started to dive into trying to figure out this food and cooking thing I didn’t know how important some things were, because not everything is important. Sometimes you can make swaps, skip steps, make it your own, and it’s still delicious. And then sometimes you ignore the "soften the butter" step and your chocolate frosting looks like ground beef and you have no idea what happened.
I’m going to ask you, no, BEG you to cook your flour for a long time and you’ll look at me like I’m a crazy person. It’s just flour! How important can that be?! I’ll just do it for like 3 minutes, it’ll be fine, right?!
I know, I hear you, it doesn’t seem that important. BUT IT IS. Have you ever seen a sad, anemic looking gumbo with a light brown sauce? Back away, don’t eat it. It’s not very good. And it’s because the person who made it skipped that step. It’s ok, they were probably having a bad day, we forgive them. But not your gumbo, your gumbo is dark and gorgeous and delicious. Because you didn’t skip that step. You opened your beer early, drank it and just enjoyed a little moment to yourself. I promise you, it’s worth it.
Especially if the beer you opened was this one:
I spend some of my childhood years in San Luis Obispo, California. If you’ve never driven Highway 1 south from San Franciso, ending in San Luis Obispo to stay the night at The Madonna Inn, you now have a new item to add to your travel checklist. I’ve been all over the world and I promise you, it’s one of the best road trips that exist in the Universe. Once you do, you must reward yourself with a beer at Firestone Walker. The beer doesn’t just have a place in my heart because of where it’s grown, it’s absolutely some of the most amazing and consistent beer there is.
Craft beer can be squirrely, and making batch after batch of the same beer, making sure each batch taste the same as the last, is nearly impossible. But I have yet to try any Firestone Walker beer that isn’t exactly what I want it to be. It’s consistent, and consistently incredible.
Coconut Merlin is a beer you should try, it’s fantastic. If you can’t get it where you live, then I guess you just have to do that road trip I suggested. Don’t worry, there is beer at the end. And it’s really good.
½cupshredded cheddar cheeseuse smoked cheddar for a more intense smoke flavor
Make the gumbo:
Add the bacon to a large stockpot or braiser over medium heat. When the bacon starts to render add the onions and peppers, cooking until the onions have softened and the bacon has rendered all of it’s fat.
With a slotted spoon remove the bacon and vegetables, setting aside. You want about 1/3 cup of bacon fat still in the pan (no need to meticulously measure, just eyeball it), if there is significantly more than 1/3 cup discard excess, if there is less add the olive oil to the bacon fat. Sprinkle with flour.
Cook the flour, stirring frequently over medium heat, until the roux is dark brown. This will take at least 20 minutes and up to 40 minutes, it’s the backbone of the dishes’ flavor so don’t skip it.
Once the roux is a dark brown add the beer, scraping to deglaze the bottom of the pan.
Add the broth, tomatoes, okra, bacon and vegetables, Cajun seasoning, cayenne, file, and sausage. Simmer until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes.
Add the shrimp and clams, stir slightly and then cover immediately. Allow to simmer for 5 minutes. Lift the lid, discard any clams that did not open. Sprinkle with parsley before serving.
Make the grits:
Add the broth and half and half to a saucepan, bring to a boil then reduce to a low simmer.
Add the grits, salt, and smoked paprika, cover with a lid. Simmer, stirring occasionally until the grits have softened, about 25 minutes. Stir in the cheese.
Serve the polenta topped with gumbo.
If you want to make this in advance, stop right before adding the shrimp and clams. The dish without the seafood can simmer over low heat for hours without issue, but it will make the seafood tough. Add the seafood, cooking right before serving. You can also make and refrigerate it without the seafood and then add it back to the pot, bring to a simmer and then cook the seafood before serving. Don't store live clams in water or in airtight packaging. Store them in an open container between wet paper towels. Ideally, buy them right before using.
Chocolate Porter Pecan Bars with Beer Candied Bacon
I know, I KNOW! Don’t look at me like that. I know that even though I’m in the midst of promoting my new cookbook Lush, I give to you a bacon dessert recipe. Is that because I want to make all the people happy, you ask? No, it’s more likely because I want to anger and upset all the people or possibly because I’ve never had a very good relationship with rules and expectations. Either way, I do apologize.
But this is also to say that just because I am the type of person who likes to put candied bacon on desserts this does NOT preclude me from also being the type of person who also loves to make food with plants, plants are delicious. Beer is made of plants. So that makes it salad, and it’s healthy (don’t take nutrition advice from me, it’s ill-advised).
This is also to say that my book Lush is the type of book that you will love if the idea of putting bacon on dessert horrifies you, and also if it intrigues you. It’s a book for people who love delicious food and beer, but it is minus bacon. I hope you love it as much as I do.
Chocolate Porter Pecan Bars with Beer Candied Bacon
13tablespoons(186g) unsalted butter, cut into cubes
1teaspoon(6g) vanilla extract
¾cup(180g) light corn syrup
½cup(100g) brown sugar, packed
¼cup(2oz) barrel aged stout or porter
2tablespoons(10g) cocoa powder
1teaspoon(6g) vanilla extract
6ounceshigh-quality dark chocolatechopped
1cup(120g) unsalted pecans, coarsely chopped
1teaspoon (6g) salt
Flakey sea salt for topping
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Add the bacon to a wire rack over a baking sheet.
Stir together the brown sugar and the beer. Brush the top side of the bacon liberally with the mixture. Bake for 8 minutes. Flip the bacon, then brush with the mixture. Bake for an additional ten minutes. Remove from oven, remove the bacon and allow to cool on a cutting board. Once the bacon is cooled, chop the bacon, set aside.
Lower the oven temperature to 350°F. Add the flour, powdered sugar, and salt to a food processor, pulse to combine.
Add the butter and vanilla extract, process until well combined.
Line an 9x13 baking dish with parchment paper. Press the crust into the bottom of the pan in an even layer.
Bake at 350 for 15 minutes or until just starting to turn a light golden brown. Allow to cool for 10 minutes (allowing the crust to cool will help it to stay in two distinct layers from the filling).
Add all the filling ingredients (except the flakey sea salt) to a mixing bowl, beat until well combined. Pour over the cooled crust.
Sprinkle the chopped bacon on top, then sprinkle with the flakey sea salt ( I used smoked Maldon sea salt).
Bake at 350°F for 35 minutes or until the filling has set and no longer jiggles when you shake the rack. Remove from oven, allow to cool before cutting.
Beer Chicken Satay with Almond Stout Dipping Sauce
I have recently discovered, to my abject horror, that I vastly prefer almond butter to peanut butter. Why so horrified, you ask? Because it is, in my conservative estimation, about one thousand times more expensive. And I am cheap. Have I told you this? That I have not one, but three favorite thrift stores, each one has it’s own unique category of items I prefer it for (food props, random vintage furniture, weird but fun jewelry). This is a true fact.
Then there comes along these items that overpower my will to conserve. Like $30 bottles of beer, and jars of roasty nut butter. No, no, that $13 dollar jar of almond butter makes total sense! And then I eat it and I’m convinced, money can be saved elsewhere because I can’t go back, not now. It’s so much better!
Sure, some people will DIE if they eat peanuts and that’s a fine reason to forgo the eating of such nuts. But there is also the added benefit of superior taste and texture, so it’s a win/win. From now on, all satay sauce should just be made with almonds, it’s safer. And more delicious.
Go forth and eat your almonds with a fine roasty stout and chicken hot off the grill.
Beer Chicken Satay with Almond Stout Dipping Sauce
Look at you, you weirdo. Passing all those normal recipes for regular ice cream and coming to visit me and my left of center concoction that involves my two favorite foods. When you ask me what kind of cake I want for my birthday, the answer is no. I don’t want cake (ok, I do, I always want cake) but instead of cake, I’d much rather have a doughnut. Because it’s fried cake and that’s always better. You will of course also serve it to me with a beer because it’s my birthday, and you’re that kind of person.
So here we are, eating our doughnuts and drinking our beer and we decide to next-level it, as we do. So we decide to make ice cream out of it. We also decide to sleep on it because a drunk idea and a sober idea aren’t always the same thing. The next day, after we wake up and decide that day-old doughnuts are not worth it, we decide that drunk us had a great idea. We also realize that making doughnut ice cream is the best use of day-old doughnuts anyway and we’re brilliant. So happy birthday to us, let’s make some ice cream.
Add the milk, cream, chopped doughnut and beer to a pan over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring frequently until the milk starts to bubble around the edges and the doughnut has broken down. Remove from heat, allow to cool slightly.
Add the yolks to a mixing bowl with the granulated sugar, powdered sugar, vanilla, and salt. Stir until well combined.
Slowly add the milk mixture while whisking continuously.
Add to an airtight container. Refrigerate until chilled, about 3 hours.
Add to an ice cream maker, churn according to manufactures specifications until a soft-serve consistency (in a KitchenAid ice cream maker, this takes about 15 minutes).
Transfer to a freezer container, freeze until set, about 2 hours.
Diageo Beer Company USA, sponsored this post. Partnerships with The Beeroness and outside companies only occur when the company’s products are ones I use and enjoy myself. All ideas, words, and opinions are my own.
The first brewery I ever visited was in Ireland when I was in college. I’d taken a flight to Dublin, landing blurry-eyed and confused early on a Thursday morning. As I stood outside the airport, my heavy pack weighing down my small frame, I tried to form enough of a thought to figure out which way to walk to get to my hostel. A passerby stops in front of me. An older man, a few inches shorter than me, clad in a wool cardigan over a plaid button-down, his eyes even bluer than mine asks me if I’m lost. I tell him that I think my hostel is just down the road but I’m not sure which way to walk. When he asks for the name of the place I’m staying, I tell him it’s called The Brewery hostile and it’s right next to the Guinness brewery.
His eyes light up, “I’ll take you there! Any excuse for a good pint!” He walks me to my destination and pauses only briefly before making his way to that taproom for a pint. The next day, I followed suit. It was the first time I’d ever heard a brewer talk, and the closest I’d ever been to brewing equipment. It left a mark.
I left that trip with two souvenirs that have stayed with me: how proud the Irish are of the Guinness brand and its history, and the love that brewers have for their craft. I’d learned that Guinness signed a 9,000-year lease on the space they still occupy, that they were one of the first companies in the world to offer employee benefits (some people even credit them with starting the trend), and one of my favorite beer facts ever:
Since the 1960’s the Queen gives out an award every year for technological achievement. In 1991 this award was given to the Guinness nitro widget (that tiny ping pong sized ball in the cans of Guinness that make them taste like draft). What came in #2 to the Nitro widget? The internet. THIS is how adored Guinness is, and that love is infectious.
To this day, I still drink Extra Stout. It’s a great beer, smooth and mellow, and it’s perfect for cooking. This summer is just kicking off and I’m not slowing down on my consumption of Guinness any time soon, it’s smooth and mellow enough for even hot weather and it’s the perfect beer to use when marinating meat or veggies for the grill.
All-Purpose Beer Marinade for Grilling (meat or veggies!)