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Porter/Stout

Chinese Stout BBQ Pork Recipe (Char Siu)

Chinese Stout BBQ Pork Recipe (Char Siu)

I really think the reason Chinese BBQ Pork is so appealing is because it’s shiny. This probably makes us all giant infants on some primitive level, but it’s true. It’s hard to resist something that catches the light the way this does. It’s like a gemstone.

A slow cooked, juicy, flavorful, deep red meaty gemstone. This isn’t anything like the grocery store dish, that one tightly wrapped in clear plastic, red ringed and dry. Overly sweet but without much flavor beyond that. This version is sticky, shiny, juicy and full of flavor.

Maybe it’s the beer that gives it this extra boost, maybe it’s the long marinade time or even the pickling salt. Most likely, it’s the magical combination of all those elements.

Although it does take some time, the active time is really low. It’s the perfect way to end a lazy weekend.

Chinese Stout BBQ Pork Recipe (Char Siu)

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs pork shoulder roast
  • 1 teaspoon (6g) pickling salt
  • ¼ cup (80g) hoisin sauce
  • 2 tablespoons (24g) brown sugar, packed
  • 1 tablespoon (15g) cooking sherry
  • ¼ cup (2oz) stout beer
  • 2 tablespoons (30g) soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon (2g) Chinese 5 spice powder
  • 2 large cloves garlic, grated with microplane

Instructions

  1. Cut the pork roast into strips that are the length of the roast and about 2 inches wide, sprinkle with pickling salt, put into a large Ziplock bag.
  2. In a small bowl stir together the remain ingredients, pour over the pork. Seal the bag removing as much air as possible.
  3. Marinate for 24 to 48 hours.
  4. Preheat the oven to 275°F.
  5. Remove the pork from the marinade, add the marinade to a pot over medium heat, boil until thickened.
  6. Add the pork to a wire rack over a baking sheet. Brush with the thickened marinade.
  7. Cook, turning and basting ever 45 minutes, until tender, 3-4 hours.
  8. Although the pork is ready to eat now, I finished this on a preheated grill. To do so, preheat a grill to about 500°F. Add the pork, cook on each side until slightly charred, about 3 mintues perside.
  9. Slice and serve.
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Chocolate Stout Cake with Cherries: Fudgy and Flourless!

 Chocolate Stout Cake with Cherries: Fudgy and Flourless!

Chocolate Stout Cake with Cherries: Fudgy & Flourless!

Chocolate stout cake is the perfect way to get back into your life after getting lost in writing a book. It’s like asking for forgiveness for your comprehensive neglect without actually apologizing for fear of reminding everyone how absent you’ve been as you waded through 30,000 words.

It’s also a reminder that flour is unnecessary in chocolate cake, it’s so much better without. So rich, dense and delicious it doesn’t even need frosting. As if the cake is above frosting, outgrown the need for it.

I would never dissuade you from a frosting related endeavor, live your truth. But if I WAS to frost this magical chocolatey beerified treat, it would be with something just as profanely mature, and wide-eye inducing.

I’ll give you some examples, just in case you are, in fact, contemplating topping this cake with something: salted caramel whipped cream, espresso ganache, bourbon mascarpone frosting.

Or, just get a pint of ice cream (salted caramel? espresso rum? horchata?) and make it a ridiculous sundae. Just make sure to serve it with a stout.

Chocolate Stout Cake with Cherries: Fudgy and Flourless!

Yield: 6-8 servings

Ingredients

  • 6 oz dark chocolate (60%), chopped
  • 1/3 (3oz) cup stout
  • ½ cup (114g) butter, chopped
  • 1 ¼ (250g) cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 3 tablespoons (45g) vegetable oil
  • ¾ cup (88g) cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon (6g) salt
  • 2 tablespoons (16g) cornstarch
  • 1 cup (160g) pitted dark cherries

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. In the top of a double boiler over a simmering water add the chocolate, beer and the butter. Stir until the butter is almost melted, turn off heat and continue to stir until butter is melted, remove from heat.
  3. In a mixing bowl whisk together the sugar and eggs until well combined. Stir in the oil. Sprinkle with cocoa powder, salt and cornstarch, whisk until well combined.
  4. Stir in the chocolate and the cherries until combined.
  5. Place a round of parchment paper inside a 10-inch spring form pan, rub the inside of the pan and the parchment paper with butter.
  6. Pour the batter inside the prepared pan in an even layer.
  7. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until the top is puffed and no longer looks wet, don’t over bake of cake will be dry. Remove from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack for 10-20 minutes. Transfer to a serving plate.
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Honey Stout Glazed Flank Steak Lettuce Wraps

Honey Stout Glazed Flank Steak Lettuce Wraps

This post was sponsored by PCC Community Markets and Oregon Country Beef. Partnerships with The Beeroness and outside companies are rare and only occur when the company’s products are ones I use and enjoy myself. All ideas and opinions are my  own.

Honey Stout Glazed Flank Steak Wraps

It took three planes and 30 hours to get me home from Brazil, and a few hours later I had the keys to my new Seattle house in my grubby little hands. I moved. I painted (ugh, red walls in ALL the rooms?!). I packed. I cleaned. I ignored my email. And my friends. I unpacked. WHEN WILL IT ALL BE OVER?!

It’s over, mostly. I didn’t want to do anything, go anywhere, buy anything. Not one thing. But just three days into living in my new house I broke down and bought the one thing I couldn’t live without.

Honey Stout Glazed Flank Steak Lettuce Wraps

My old, trusty, moved-it-up-from-LA, grill didn’t survive the move. I got itchy to cook over open flames in my new backyard and set out to fill the void in my yard, and in my ability to cook with flames.

Grilling isn’t just about the way the smoke and the char of the flames make your food taste, it’s about community. You don’t text a handful of your nearest and dearest with the phrase, “Come over, I’m going to fire up the oven!”

No. Nope. GRILL. That’s what people will drive across town for. What they’ll brave the Mariners traffic, and the accident on the 405 for: to sit in your backyard, drink beer from your well-curated beer tub and eat what you grilled for them.

Honey Stout Glazed Flank Steak Lettuce Wraps

As you may know, I curate my meat selection even more rigorously than my beer selection. The origins of your meat matters in profound ways, ways that have always mattered to me.

Finding and supporting organizations, like Oregon Country Beef, whose 80 family-owned ranchers treat their animals, employees, and land with respect and humanity, giving you top quality meat that’s free of antibiotics and added hormones, isn’t just a small way to make our world better –  it’s a BIG way.

 Sprinkle the flank steak liberally with salt, place in a resalable gallon sized plastic bag, or in a large container with an air-tight lid. Stir together the Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, 2 tablespoons honey and ½ cup stout beer. Pour the mixture over the steak, seal (remove as much air as you can from the bag, if using), and refrigerate for 12-24 hours. In a small bowl stir together the remaining honey and stout beer, warm slightly if the mixture is having a difficult time coming together, set aside. Remove the steak from the marinade, pat dry. Preheat the grill to medium high. Cut the peppers into slices, making sure they are too large to fall between the grates in your grill (you can always slice them thinner after grilling). Brush the steak on all sides with honey glaze before adding to the grill. Grill for 3-5 minutes on each side before turning, re-brushing with glaze every time you flip the steak. Grill until the internal temperate of the steak reaches 135F, remove from grill and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Grill the peppers until softened, about 4 minutes. Serve steak and peppers along side butter lettuce leaves, green onions and sriracha sauce, allow guests to assemble as desired.

You vote with your dollars every day, and shopping at community-owned stores like PCC Community Markets(for those in the Seattle area!) helps me to continue to make a difference by supporting those who are putting fresh, organic and sustainable ingredients at the top of the list.

This was the first recipe on the new grill, and the first of many times I’ll be firing it up for friends and neighbors, throwing on some Oregon Country Beef and drinking some beer. It’s going to be a great summer.

Honey Stout Glazed Flank Steak Lettuce Wraps

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • Honey Stout Glazed Flank Steak Lettuce Wraps
  • 2 lbs flank steak
  • 1 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ cup honey, divided
  • ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons stout beer, divided
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 yellow bell pepper
  • ¼ cup chopped green onions
  • 1 head butter lettuce
  • Sriracha sauce for serving, if desired

Instructions

  1. Sprinkle the flank steak liberally with salt, place in a resalable gallon sized plastic bag, or in a large container with an air-tight lid.
  2. Stir together the Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, 2 tablespoons honey and ½ cup stout beer. Pour the mixture over the steak, seal (remove as much air as you can from the bag, if using), and refrigerate for 12-24 hours.
  3. In a small bowl stir together the remaining honey and stout beer, warm slightly if the mixture is having a difficult time coming together, set aside.
  4. Remove the steak from the marinade, pat dry.
  5. Preheat the grill to medium high.
  6. Cut the peppers into slices, making sure they are too large to fall between the grates in your grill (you can always slice them thinner after grilling).
  7. Brush the steak on all sides with honey glaze before adding to the grill. Grill for 3-5 minutes on each side before turning, re-brushing with glaze every time you flip the steak. Grill until the internal temperate of the steak reaches 135F, remove from grill and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Grill the peppers until softened, about 4 minutes.
  8. Serve steak and peppers along side butter lettuce leaves, green onions and sriracha sauce, allow guests to assemble as desired.
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Grilled Mongolian Stout Beef Skewers

Grilled Mongolian Stout Beef Skewers

This post was sponsored by PCC Community Markets and Oregon Country Beef. Partnerships with The Beeroness and outside companies are rare and only occur when the company’s products are ones I use and enjoy myself. All ideas and opinions are my own. 

 

When I was just days away from turning into a middle schooler my parents decided to buy a farm in Eastern Washington and move us away from the small beach town in Central California to grow alfalfa, livestock and ride horses.  

During my time there, we raised pigs for our own consumption and it had the most profound effect on me. Learning how the sausage is made (literally) changes the way you see food, for better or for worse.  

 

It turned me into a vegetarian for years, pushed me deep into a love of produce and taught me that where your food comes from is important. Although I now eat meat, I eat meat like a vegetarian.

What does that even mean?! 

First off, I don’t eat meat because I need it, I eat it when I want it. Secondly, I really care about where it comes from. I want to know that the ranch it’s from is ethical and humane – not just to their animals but to their employees, too. 

I’ll bargain shop for almost anything, but meat isn’t one of those things. I decided years ago that I’d rather eat less, but better-quality meat, than more of something cheap, and I’m willing to spend a little more to support those who work harder and work better.  

 

When I stopped being a vegetarian, finding meat that matched these standards was hard. We just didn’t have time to research every brand that came our way, especially when we were just trying to get through the grocery shopping list.

To make it a little easier, I made myself a cheat-sheet of the brands that I knew I could trust and where I could get them.  

 That all changed when I moved to Seattle and found PCC Community Markets, where I discovered that they care as much as I do about supporting small family farms and local growers producing fresh and organic food—instantly doubling the size of my cheat sheet.

For those of you who don’t know, PCC is the nations largest community-owned food market committed to making the best meals from scratch using only real ingredients.

 

As for the meat? Oregon Country Beef was an easy addition to my cheat sheet. It’s the free range, no added hormones and antibiotic-free sort that I was searching for. I let their 80 family-owned ranches worry about the hard but important stuff – GAP certification and Non-GMO Project verification – and I just keep looking for their packages at PCC. 

 One less thing to worry about, and one more reason to fire up the grill!

 

Grilled Mongolian Stout Beef Skewers

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 1.5 lb tri-tip or rib-eye steak, cut into cubes 
  • 2 teaspoons salt  
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch 
  • ½ teaspoon ginger, grated with a microplane 
  • 3 cloves garlic, grated with a microplane 
  • ¼ cup soy sauce 
  • 2/3 cup stout beer 
  • ½ cup dark brown sugar 
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil  
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper  
  • 2 tablespoons chopped green onions 
  •  

Instructions

  1. Sprinkle the beef liberally with salt, allow to sit at room temperature while you prepare the sauce.  
  2. Preheat a grill to medium-high.  
  3. In a saucepan whisk together the cornstarch, ginger, garlic, soy sauce, beer, brown sugar, sesame oil and black pepper. Bring to a boil. Allow to boil, stirring frequently, until thickened, about 5 minutes.  
  4. Thread the beef cubes onto grill skewers. Brush liberally with sauce.  
  5. Add the skewers to the grill. Turn every 2-3 minutes, brushing with glaze every time you turn.  
  6. Cook until steak has grill marks and is firm to the touch, about 6-8 minutes.  
  7. Add to a serving plate, sprinkle with green onions.  
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Drunk Diablo: Chocolate Stout Devils Food Cake with Mexican Hot Chocolate Frosting

Drunk Diablo: Chocolate Stout Devils Food Cake with Mexican Hot Chocolate Frosting

Drunk Diablo: Chocolate Stout Devils Food Cake with Mexican Hot Chocolate Frosting

When you have a weird job, there are two categories of projects you work on. The first types are the reasons you got into this in the first place. The love projects. The creative soul projects. The goosebumps and fevered excitement projects.

Those are the ones that keep you going. The second type, are the ones that pay the bills. The ones that you still like, the ones you’re grateful for, the ones that you still throw your heart and gypsy soul into, but in your heart of hearts, you know you’re only doing them because you like electricity and groceries and being able to pay those bills affords you such luxuries.

Drunk Diablo: Chocolate Stout Devils Food Cake with Mexican Hot Chocolate Frosting

If you’re lucky, there is a huge Venn diagram overlap between the two. Most of what you do is —to one degree or another— both. I very rarely do projects that are just to pay the bills, but I very frequently find myself immersed in a passion project that will probably never result in any type of bill-paying.

I’m ok with this, it’s how I know I’ve chased my career down the right rabbit holes.

Right now I’m trying to turn my number one passion project into something that’s more in the center of that diagram. It’s a website I started about a year ago, a project I’ve been trying to move forward and I’m really in love with it.

It’s  Craft Beer Photography, it’s stock photos, it’s prints, it’s "please hire me to photograph your brewery because that sounds really fun and I want to do it."

It’s also one of my favorite parts of this weird job I’m trying to invent for myself. Because no one has ever really done this and I’m still trying to figure out what it looks like.

For now, let’s eat some cake and drink some beer and figure the rest out later.

 


Drunk Diablo: Chocolate Stout Devils Food Cake with Mexican Hot Chocolate Frosting

Yield: 10-12 servings

Ingredients

    For cake:
  • 3 ounces bitter sweet chocolate
  • ½ cups (4oz) hot brewed coffee
  • 1 cup (8oz) stout beer
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 ½ cups (375g) sugar
  • ¾ cup (180g) vegetable oil
  • 1 ½ cups (360g) sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 ½ cups (300g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 ¾ cups (168g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons (10g) baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon (5g) baking powder
  • 1 teaspoons (6g) salt
  • For the frosting:
  • 1 ½ cup (342g) butter, softened
  • 2 cups (386g) vegetable shortening*
  • ¼ cup (24g) cocoa powder
  • 3 cups (390g) powdered sugar (plus additional to taste)
  • ¼ teaspoon (0.5g) cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon (4g) cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon (2g) chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • For the ganache:
  • 10 wt oz dark chocolate (60% cacao)
  • ¾ cup (180g)heavy cream
  • ¼ cup (60g) stout beer

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
  2. Add the chocolate, coffee and beer to a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 30 seconds, stir and repeat until melted (this can also be done in a double boiler).
  3. Add the eggs and sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer, beat on high until light in color and well combined. Add the vegetable oil, sour cream and vanilla, beat until well combined. Mix in the chocolate mixture.
  4. In a separate bowl stir together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
  5. Sprinkle the dry ingredients over the wet ingredients, stir until just combined.
  6. Divide evenly between three 9-inch cake pans that have been greased and floured.
  7. Bake for 35 minutes or until the top springs back when lightly touched.
  8. Add the butter to the bowl of a stand mixer, beat on high until light and fluffy. Add the shortening, beat until well combined. Add the remaining frosting ingredients, beating until well combined. Frost the cake, with frosting between all the layers. Refrigerate while you prepare the ganache.
  9. Add all the ganache ingredients to the top of a double boiler set over simmering water. Stir until the chocolate is almost all melted. Remove from heat and continue to stir until the chocolate is completely melted.
  10. Pour the ganache over the cake, spread in an even layer, or allow to drip down the sides.

Notes

*Just use the shortening. It’s a texture thing, and it’s totally worth getting over the fact that shortening skeeves you out. It makes the most amazing frosting, trust me, just do it!

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Sweet and Sticky Garlic Stout Beef

Sweet and Sticky Garlic Stout Beef, 20 minutes and it’s so good!

Sweet and Sticky Garlic Stout Beef, 20 minutes and it's so good!

I’m on an airplane, somewhere over South America, between Panama and Huston, Texas. I’m trying to remember waking up this morning, but sleeping the night before I leave a trip is always impossible.

My brain is processing what I’m leaving, the sunburn I’m bringing home from Costa Rica, the days I spent teaching a new menu to a group of South American cooks, the rum bar that has become my favorite in the world, the cocktails, the people who had to endure my hideous Spanish skills, and even the small moments that have embedded themselves into my soul.

Sweet and Sticky Garlic Stout Beef, 20 minutes and it's so good!

I spent two weeks in Panama City, Panama creating menus for two brands, two brands that I love and was incredibly grateful to get to work with.  La Rana Dorada, the hands-down best beer in Central America, has one of the most beautiful pubs in Casco Viejo, Panama.

At the end of the week, after sweaty hours and dozens of dishes, the head chef learned enough English to say to me, "You cook like magic. Thank you for making my cooking better. Thank you for making my kitchen better." That exchange is my favorite souvenir I’ve brought home from a trip.

I also worked on The Pub, an Irish pub in Bogota, Colombia. A place so perfectly crafted, you feel like you’ve stumbled into Dublin.

A week of perfecting Fish 'N Chips, modernizing Bangers and Mash, and creating Colombian takes on Irish dishes, I’m proud of what we did. The cook who flew down from Bogota to learn the menu asked me on the last day, "Why food? You photograph and write, you could do that with anything. Why food?"

Why food? Because it’s the same in every language. Everyone, throughout the history of time, has sat down to a meal with the ones they love.

Everyone shares food as a way to bond. Everyone wants to eat dinner with the people closest to them, or the people they want to be close to. Nothing levels the playing field like food.

Sweet and Sticky Garlic Stout Beef, 20 minutes and it's so good!

Sweet and Sticky Garlic Stout Beef

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 lb flank steak
  • 1 teaspoon (6g) salt
  • ½ teaspoon ginger, grated with a microplane
  • 1 teaspoon hot Chinese mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 large cloves garlic, grated with a microplane
  • ¼ cup (85g) honey
  • ½ teaspoon (2g) black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons (45mL) soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons (45mL) stout beer
  • ¼ cup cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 2 tablespoons chopped green onions
  • rice for serving

Instructions

  1. Place the steak in the freezer for 15 minutes (this will make it easier to cut).
  2. In a small bowl stir together the ginger, mustard, red pepper flakes, garlic, honey, black pepper, and 1 tablespoon soy sauce.
  3. Remove the steak from the freezer, thinly slice against the grain then sprinkle on all sides with salt.
  4. Place the cornstarch in a small bowl.
  5. Stir together the beer and remaining soy sauce in a separate bowl.
  6. Heat the sesame oil in a wok or skillet over medium high heat.
  7. A few at a time, add the beef strips to the cornstarch, then add to the soy/beer mixture, then add to the skillet. Repeat for all beef.
  8. Once the beef has started to brown, add the honey mixture as well as any of the beer mixture that may remain from the steak dredge, to the skillet.
  9. Lower heat to medium, cooking until sauce has thickened.
  10. Add to a serving platter, sprinkle with sesame seeds and green onions. Serve with rice.
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Stouts and Scouts: No Churn Thin Mint Beer Ice Cream

Stouts and Scouts: No-Churn Thin Mint Beer Ice Cream.  Ten-minute prep! 

This is my exception. Really, the only one. I have an aversion to mint that started in a cave in Middle Atlas the day before I almost died in Morocco.

But the thing is, if you are ever in a cave in Middle Atlas and a very nice cave dweller offers to make you tea, YOU DRINK IT! Even if the water is so dirty it looks like mud. Even if the glasses are a little cracked and leaky. Even if you’re fairly certain you’ll end up with dysentery.

Even if your guide through Middle Atlas turns out to be a drug dealer. That last part really had nothing to do with the tea other than it magnified an already strange experience.

After that day, mint was never the same. I wouldn’t take it back if you paid me, it was an amazing (although slightly terrifying at times) experience that happened to change the way I respond to the flavor of mint.

Thin Mints are the exception. Maybe it’s because they taste nothing like the mint leaves that had been muddled into my glass that day.

Or maybe it’s because they remind me of being a kid. Or maybe it’s because I’m such a sucker for those little crack dealers outside the grocery stores that I can’t help but buy them every time. And since the appropriate place to store your crack, I mean Thin Mints, is in the freezer, making ice cream just made sense.

And if there’s a better cookie and beer pairing than Thin Mints and an Imperial Stout I can’t think of it at the moment.

Stouts and Scouts: No Churn Thin Mint Beer Ice Cream

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 3 hours, 10 minutes

Yield: 6-8 servings

No churn, ten minutes prep!

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups heavy cream
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 8 thin mint cookies, crushed
  • ¼ cup stout beer (Imperial stout preferred)

Instructions

  1. Add the cream, powdered sugar, and granulated sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat on high until soft peaks form.
  2. Add in the cocoa powder, salt, and crushed cookies, stir to combine.
  3. While the mixer is running, slowly add the beer until it is well combined.
  4. Add to a freezer safe bowl, freeze until set, about 3 hours.
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Mushroom Stout Not-Bolognese AKA Best Vegetarian Pasta Sauce Ever

Mushroom Stout Not-Bolognese AKA Best Vegetarian Pasta Sauce Ever

This isn’t a bolognese, I know that because my proper bolognese with tons of pork and beef is the stuff of dreams. There really isn’t a word for this sauce, it’s vegetable-based but as meaty as you can get without the meat.

I’m knee-deep in writing my third cookbook, a love letter to produce (sans meat) and as much as I adore meat, I’m exploring my infatuation with plants right now.

I want to write you a book so full of beautiful dishes that you won’t even notice that I left out meat, it’s not just for vegetarians, it’s for anyone who loves food and beer.

There is no tofu or tempeh, nothing that feels like a glaring reminder that this isn’t a meat dish. Because when you have the entire spectrum of plants to play with, the food has no reason not to be amazing.

This is a remake of my favorite pasta sauce, Sout Bolognese, but without the meat. I’ve made it in a very similar fashion (don’t forget the milk, it’s an essential part of flavor development) with a little more spice, and with mushrooms to make it hearty and unforgettable.

It’s even better the next day.

Mushroom Stout Not-Bolognese AKA Best Vegetarian Pasta Sauce Ever

Ingredients
  

  • 2 tablespoon (20g) olive oil
  • 2 ribs (100g) celery, chopped
  • ½ of one large white onion chopped
  • 1 large (120g) carrot, chopped
  • 2 lbs crimini mushrooms finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoon (16g) salt
  • 1 cup (268g) whole milk
  • 12 ounces (340g) stout
  • ¼ cup (50g) chopped Mama Lil’s (pickled Hungarian goat horn peppers)
  • 2 teaspoon (8g) black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon (6g) garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon (6g) onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon (3g) smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon (6g) cumin
  • 1 teaspoon (8g) red pepper flakes
  • *Parmesan rind optional
  • 1.5 lbs (680g) crushed tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon (16g) tomato puree
  • 2 tablespoons (30mL) balsamic vinegar
  • 1 cup (80g) fresh shaved or shredded parmesan
  • ¼ cup chopped parsley
  • 6 servings pasta

Instructions
 

  • Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the celery, onions, and carrot. Cook until the vegetables have softened and the onions have started to caramelize, at least 15 minutes and up to 45 (the longer you allow the onions to caramelize, the better the overall flavor).
  • Add the mushrooms, sprinkle with salt, cook until dark and softened.
  • Add the milk and allow to cook until the milk looks as though it is mostly cooked off, the pan looks dry and the mushrooms are starting to stick to the pan, about 30 minutes.
  • Add half of the stout, cooking until the beer is mostly gone, about 15 minutes.
  • Stir in the peppers, spices, tomatoes, tomato puree, remaining beer and balsamic (plus Parmesan rind, if using) cook over medium/low heat (very low simmer), for three to four hours (you can transfer the sauce to a slow cooker instead, cook on low for 8 hours).
  • Stir in the Parmesan in the last ten minutes of cooking.
  • Serve over pasta, sprinkle with parsley and additional Parmesan if desired.

 

 

Individual Stout Mousse Cakes with Flambé Bourbon Beer Cherries (for two)

Individual Stout Mousse Cakes with Flambé Bourbon Beer Cherries

Individual Stout Mousse Cakes with Flambé Bourbon Beer Cherries2

This is for you. Or really, it’s for us. Because I decided a long time ago to redefine Valentine’s day to be about more than just romantic love.

Valentines is about the people you love, all of them. Even the ones who never see you naked. Especially the ones who never see you naked (this leads me to the "how much inappropriateness can I shove into one paragraph?" line of thought).

You’re single? Who cares, you love tons of people! Your mom, your neighbor, your bartender. You have plenty of people to love all over and share a beer with. That’s what’s important. The people we get to love and make a cake for.

I love you, for instance. Mostly because you make it possible for me to do my weird job. Where would I be if you didn’t care that I make food with beer instead of just drinking it like a normal person? I know where I’d be, I’d still be doing this.

Which would be fine, but my weird job is amazing. It’s more than I think I even deserve. So to thank you, I made you a cake. Feel free to share it with your mom, or your neighbor or your bartender.

Or, you know, that person who gets to see you naked. As if seeing you naked wasn’t present enough!

 

Individual Stout Mousse Cakes with Flambé Bourbon Beer Cherries (for two)

Servings 2 people

Ingredients
  

For the cherries:

  • ¼ cup Bourbon
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup barrel-aged stout
  • 1 cup Bing cherries pitted (thawed if frozen)
  • ¼ cup Cointreau

For the cakes:

  • 4 tablespoons 57g butter (plus more for ramekins)
  • 6 oz bittersweet chocolate 62% cocoa content
  • ¼ cup 32g stout
  • 3 eggs separated
  • ¼ tsp cream tartar
  • ¼ cup 50g sugar
  • 1 tablespoon 6g cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon 8g flour

Instructions
 

  • Add the bourbon, sugar, and stout to a saucepan. Simmer until sugar has dissolved.
  • Add the cherries to a re-sealable jar, pour bourbon/beer mixture over the cherries. Allow to sit at room temperature for one hour. Seal and refrigerate until ready to use, can be made several weeks in advance.
  • Heat the oven to 375°F.
  • Place butter, stout, and chocolate in the top of a double boiler (or a metal bowl set over a pot of water) over gently simmering water. Stir frequently until melted, remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer add the egg whites, salt, and cream of tartar, building up speed, beat on high until soft peaks form. While the mixer is running add the sugar a bit at a time, beat until stiff peaks form.
  • In a large bowl stir together the egg yolks, cornstarch, and flour. Beat on high until light and slightly fluffy.
  • Slowly pour the chocolate mixture into the egg yolk mixture, beating until completely combined, scraping the bottom to make sure the mixture is well incorporated.
  • About 1/3 at a time, gently fold the egg whites into the chocolate mixture using a spatula. Stir until egg whites are well combined with the chocolate mixture.
  • Grease two large (10oz) ramekins or oven-safe bowls with butter until well coated.
  • Add the batter evenly between the two ramekins.
  • Bake for thirty minutes or until the top has puffed and looks dry. Remove from oven and allow to cool to room temperature before removing from ramekins.
  • Add the cherries to a small pot or skillet. Pour the Cointreau over the cherries. Using a kitchen torch or long match, light the liquid on fire. Swirl until to distribute the flame. Allow to flambé for about 2 minutes, then add a lid to extinguish the flame. Pour the liquid and the cherries evenly over the cakes. Serve immediately.

 

 

Chipotle Pale Ale Polenta with Stout Braised Mushrooms

Chipotle Pale Ale Polenta with Stout Braised Mushrooms

Chipotle Pale Ale Polenta with Stout Braised Mushrooms

I have something to tell you. I’m writing another book, a cookbook, obviously. It’s a book I’ve wanted to write for a while, a book that I’m excited to create. It’ll focus on cooking with not only beer, but with in-season produce.

It’ll break down the seasons, what fruits and vegetables are grown (in the ground!) that time of year, and the recipes will highlight those amazing ingredients. Beer is seasonal, too and that will be incorporated in the recipes. Each season will bring you dishes that will make you want to grab a beer and raid your local farmers market.

I thought about this a lot, about how to truly make the produce the star of the show. How to focus on what’s amazing about each fruit or vegetable and make it shine. I decided that in order to do this, I needed to leave meat out of it.

It really needs to be produce focused. This (even as a meat eater), makes me the most excited. I love being able to bring out the best in these amazing ingredients, create dishes that don’t feel "without" just because the protein isn’t meat. I love veg food, and this book will be my love letter to it.

I’ll give you more details as I get closer to the release date. I can’t wait to share it with you.

Chipotle Pale Ale Polenta with Stout Braised Mushrooms

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

    For the Polenta:
  • 2 ½ cups vegetable broth
  • 1 cup pale ale
  • 1 cup corn grits (polenta)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ cup half and half (or almond milk for vegan)
  • 1 large chipotle peppers in adobo, minced (seeds removed, if possible)
  • 1 teaspoon adobo sauce
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • For the Mushrooms:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped white onions
  • 6 cups chopped assorted mushrooms (crimini, oyster, shiitake)
  • 1/4 cup stout beer
  • 3 gloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 large leaves of fresh sage, minced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

Instructions

  1. Add the vegetable broth and beer to a saucepan, bring to a boil then reduce to a low simmer.
  2. Add the grits and salt, simmer, stirring occasionally until the grits have softened. Stir in the half and half (or almond milk), chipotle peppers and adobo, garlic powder and smoked paprika.
  3. Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat, add the onions, sauté until onions have softened and started to brown.
  4. Add the mushrooms, cooking until the mushrooms have softened, about 15 minutes (keep the heat relatively low to get the most flavor out of the mushrooms without burning).
  5. Add the beer, garlic, salt, pepper and sage. Cook until the beer is gone and the pan is mostly dry.
  6. Plate the polenta, top with mushrooms, sprinkle with cilantro, serve immediately.
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Stout Cranberry Mascarpone Chocolate Truffles

Stout Cranberry Mascarpone Chocolate Truffles

Stout Cranberry Mascarpone Chocoalte Truffles305

I do this thing every year, and I think you should do it, too. It’s about resolutions. I make one every year, but they aren’t about denying myself things in a way that I will spend the year torturing myself with goals that revolve around fitness or money.

They’re about ways I want to add to my life, things I want to do, things other people call "bucket list" (I hate that term, if you want to do, just do it! Don’t add it to a list!) items.

Find something you’ve always wanted to do and make it your goal. Want to go to Panama? Figure out how. Of course you can, don’t look at me like that. What do you need to do? Take a second job? Save all your money until next November when you’ll go on a Central American holiday?

Stout Cranberry Mascarpone Chocoalte Truffles

Whatever it takes, it can be done. Make a goal to do something you’ve always wanted to do, stop making resolutions to hate yourself for a few months then hate yourself for giving up.

A handful of years ago my New Years goal was to get published, 6 months later I had a book deal. The next year it was to get paid to write for magazines, that year I wrote about Homeboy Industries for a magazine and it’s still my favorite thing I’ve ever written.

This year my New Years goal is get work as a travel writer. Sure, I’ve done a few things. I’ve written this, and this, but I want more. I want something big. I’ll let you know how it goes, but for now, I’m hopeful.

Set your goal, tell me what it is, and we can check in on each other through the year. You’ve got this.

Stout Cranberry Mascarpone Chocolate Truffles

Serving Size: 18-24 truffles

Ingredients

  • ¾ cup fresh cranberries
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup stout beer
  • 8 oz mascarpone cheese
  • 1/3 cup powdered sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 10 oz dark chocolate (60% cocoa content)

Instructions

  1. Add the cranberries, granulated sugar and beer to a pot over medium high heat. Bring to a boil, boil for 5 minutes. Remove from heat, drain, add to a small dish and refrigerate until chilled (can be done several days in advance, cover if chilling longer than an hour).
  2. In a mixing bowl add the mascarpone, powdered sugar, and salt, beat on high until well combined. Chill for at least 30 minutes and up to three days (cover if chilling longer than an hour).
  3. Using a melon baller or small spoon, make half a ball of mascarpone, add one or two stout soaked cranberries, then add more mascarpone to make a ball about the size or a large marble. Add to a plate covered with wax paper. Continue until all the mascarpone is used. Add the plate of mascarpone balls to the freezer, freeze for 30 minutes.
  4. Add about 8 oz of the chocolate to the top of a double boiler set over gently simmering water, making sure the water does not boil, keep the heat low. Stir until the chocolate is mostly melted. Remove from heat, add the remaining chocolate and stir until all the chocolate is melted.
  5. One at a time add the balls of mascarpone to the melted chocolate with a fork, cover completely with chocolate, then return to the plate. Allow to dry until set, about 10 minutes. Chill until ready to serve.
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Prosciutto Mushroom Pasta in a Porter Cream Sauce

Prosciutto Mushroom Pasta in a Porter Cream Sauce

I’ve figured something out. I have a reverse sense of fear. Is this a thing? I think so, even if it’s a term I just made up. I’m terrified of things that shouldn’t scare me, like mall Santas, commitment, and going on a cruise.

But things that should scare me like almost dying in Morocco and jumping out of airplanes, those things sound fun and exciting. The thought of having the same job for 30 years sounds frightening, but quitting my job to write about beer wasn’t (even without any certainty of income).

This all points to the same issue: I must be miswired on some fundamental level.

I’m OK with this, to be honest, I prefer it. There is a long list of things I’d change about myself if given the chance, but this isn’t one of them. Maybe my life would be a bit easier if I was more typical, but clearly "easy" isn’t something I’ve ever strived for.

For now, I’ll continue to do things that don’t make sense like putting beer in all the things and taking a perfectly lovely vegetarian pasta and covering it in pork. And I hope you’re OK with that since I like you.

And I want you to stick around. Especially because of all the lovely things you said when I posted this. You’re the best.

 

Prosciutto Mushroom Pasta in a Porter Cream Sauce

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 oz prosciutto
  • 1 shallot, chopped (about ¼ cup)
  • 5 cups mixed mushrooms, rough chopped (chanterelles, crimini, oyster, Shittake)
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1/3 cup porter beer
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 12 ounces pappardelle pasta
  • ¼ cup fresh grated parmesan

Instructions

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the slices of prosciutto, cooking until crispy. Remove from heat and allow to drain and cool.
  2. Add the shallots, cooking until softened, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the mushrooms and thyme, cooking until the mushrooms have browned, about 10 minutes.
  4. Add the beer, scraping to deglaze the bottom of the pan. Stir in the chicken broth, lower heat to simmer until the sauce has slightly thickened. Stir in the cream, and remaining spices.
  5. Cook the pasta in boiling, salted water until just before al dente.
  6. Drain the pasta and add to the pan. Toss to coat.
  7. Transfer pasta to a serving bowl. Crumble prosciutto and sprinkle on the top. Sprinkle with parmesan, salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.

Notes

Adapted from Bon Appetite 

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Adapted from Bon Appetit

 

Stout Osso Buco Recipe

Stout Osso Buco  Recipe

It’s been eye-opening.

The way the past few months have unfolded has shaken me awake. I’ve had to face the things about myself that I kept hidden like jewels in a wall safe. What I do for attention and what I do to push people away, the masks I wear and the image I project.

There are times in your life when you come face to face to what you’ve been avoiding, like realizing you’ve inadvertently chained yourself to a rabid tiger, and you have a choice to make: it’s kill or be killed.

I’m learning to kill the tigers in my life, I’m trying to face them all regardless of what it stirs up from the dredges of an otherwise calm lake.

I’ve made a decision to put more focus and value on what I’m good at, what I want people to like me for in my head, rather than what my heart that’s still a damaged teenager wants. I want to write another book, another project I can throw myself into and hone the abilities I’ve curated in myself that remind me of that value of what I am, what I want people to see.

The first book revealed who I was, and what I was avoiding in myself. The night before it was due was one of the hardest of my life when I came face to face with a tiger who’d eaten throw his cage.

The second book was a life raft keeping me afloat as I dealt with the fall out from putting that tiger down. This book, the next one, won’t spring from trauma but growth, moving forward and becoming better.

In honor of this decision, I’m giving you the Osso Buco Recipe from my first book: The Craft Beer Cookbook. And I’m reminding you to slay some tigers this year, face it, kill it and become better. We can do it together.

Stout Osso Buco

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

    For the Osso Bucco:
  • 4 slices thick cut bacon
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 2.5 lbs beef shanks (4 to 5)
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 ½ cups carrots, peeled and sliced (about 2 large)
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped
  • 1 cup white onions, chopped
  • 1 cup porter or stout beer
  • 3 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 3 cups broth (chicken, vegetable, or beef will work)
  • For the Gremolata:
  • ¼ cup fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon lemon zest
  • ½ teaspoon orange zest
  • 1 large clove garlic, grated with a zester or microplane
  • polenta, rice or mashed potatoes for serving

Instructions

  1. In a large pot or Dutch oven, cook the bacon over medium heat until most of
  2. the fat has rendered and the bacon starts to crisp. Remove bacon with a slotted
  3. spoon, set aside, reserve pan and bacon fat.
  4. Salt and pepper the beef shanks liberally.
  5. Add flour to a bowl. One at a time dredge shanks in the flour until well coated.
  6. Return the Dutch oven to heat, allow the bacon fat to get hot but not smoking.
  7. Sear the shanks in bacon fat until browned on both sides. Remove shanks from pot.
  8. Add olive oil to pot along with carrots, celery and onion. Cook until softened,
  9. about 8 minutes.
  10. Add the beer, scraping to deglaze the bottom. Stir in the tomato paste.
  11. Return shanks and bacon to the pot. Pour in broth until shanks are ¾ of the way
  12. covered.
  13. Allow liquid to simmer but not boil for 3 to 3 ½ hours or until meat is tender
  14. and falling off the bone. While shanks are cooking, turn over every 30 to 45 minutes. Add additional broth to maintain a liquid level that is about ¾ of the way up the side of the shanks.
  15. Combine all gremolata ingredients in a small bowl.
  16. Serve with pan sauce, topped with gremolata, over polenta, rice or mashed potatoes.
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This recipe is dedicated to Kel Shively, you will always be missed.

Stout Romesco Dip (10 minutes, so good)

Stout Romesco Dip (10 minutes, so good)

This was been a woodwork year. One of those years when people from my distant past, from a time when I was a person who doesn’t exist anymore, come out of the woodwork to jump back into my life. They feel equal parts foreign and comfortable, like a warm bath in the middle of the day.

My favorite side effect of the woodwork people is that I get to tell the stories my everyday friends are sick of, and I get to feel impressive. I get to tell the story of when I almost died in Morocco, and the time I was asked to do porn. And if you and I meet, and you get me drunk enough, I’ll tell all the stories of my life running around LA with rock stars that I won’t ever immortalize in digital print.

There is an element to recounting my weird past that I need right now, a reminder that when your life isn’t exactly what you want it to be, it might be what you need. It’s a reminder that it’s an evolution, a journey, and the rocks in the road have been fewer than the oases. Sure, things are weird right now, but I’m not done. Not even close. Check back in another 10 years and I’ll have more weird stories for you.

At least that’s the goal. Who knows if I’ll have a bigger house, or a fancier car, but I can guarantee you that I won’t be boring. I’m just hanging my hat on that being the better end of the deal.

Stout Romesco Dip (10 minutes, so good)

Yield: 4-6 servings

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup (2.8 wt oz) sliced almonds
  • 1 large bell pepper, roasted (from a jar is fine)
  • 1 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 6 wt oz tomato puree
  • 2 tablespoon (10g) chopped Italian parsley
  • 3 tablespoon (42g) stout beer
  • 1 teaspoon (2g)red pepper flakes
  • ½ teaspoon (1g) smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon (3g) sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon (2g) black pepper
  • ¼ cup (56g) olive oil

Instructions

  1. Add the almonds to a pan over medium high heat.
  2. Pull the pan back and forth across the burner to toss the almonds until the almonds have lightly toasted, about 3 minutes (keep a close eye, they burn quickly).
  3. Add the almonds, red pepper, garlic, tomato puree, parsley, beer, red pepper flakes, smoked paprika, salt and pepper to a food processor.
  4. Process for about one minute, then slowly add the olive oil until well combined.
  5. Serve with bread, crackers or crudities.
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Grilled Stout Steak Sandwich with Charred Poblanos and Blue Cheese Sour Cream

Grilled Stout Steak Sandwich with Charred Poblanos and Blue Cheese Sour Cream. My new favorite sandwich!

Of all the things I love about this weird job I invented for myself, I have a favorite. A hands-down-favorite aspect of it all: the people. It sounds trite, saccharine, melodramatic, but it’s true. The people you meet in beer are the best kind of people: kind, open, creative, generous. These are people you want to root for.

Over pints a few weeks ago a group of Seattle Beer People and I decided it was about time we did a beer and food event. In part because we love beer, and we love food. But really because we want an excuse to hang out with more Seattle Beer People. We want to pour pints, eat some food (made by me!) and hang out all afternoon.

Join us, we want you there. So much that we made the ticket price for a pint and four small bites stupid crazy low.  Check it out: Beer & Food Tasting Event at Stoup Brewing

 

Grilled Stout Steak Sandwich with Charred Poblanos and Blue Cheese Sour Cream

Yield: 6 sandwiches

Ingredients

  • 12oz stout
  • 2 tablespoons (28g) soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon (14g) Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 large cloves garlic, grated with a microplane
  • 2 lbs flank steak
  • 4 poblano chilies
  • 1 large sweet onion (Vidalia, Maui, or Walla Walla), cut into ¼ inch rings
  • 3-4 tablespoons olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 cup (120g) sour cream
  • 1/3 cup (35g) crumbled blue cheese
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 6 hoagie rolls, split
  • ¼ cup green onions, chopped

Instructions

  1. Stir together the stout, soy sauce, Worcestershire, and garlic in a large glass bowl or baking dish. Add the steak and allow to marinate at room temperature for 45 minutes or in the refrigerator for 3 to 6 hours.
  2. Heat the grill to high.
  3. Brush the peppers and onions with olive oil. Grill until the onions are soft and have prominent grill marks, and the skin on the peppers is charred and starting to peel away from the pepper.
  4. Add the peppers to a brown paper bag, rolling to seal in the steam. Set aside while you grill the steak.
  5. Remove the steak from marinade, pat dry, sprinkle liberally with salt.
  6. Grill on both sides until medium rare, about 4 minutes per side. Remove from grill, allow to rest.
  7. Remove the peppers from the bag, peel off the charred skin, cut the soft pepper into strips.
  8. Thinly slice the steak.
  9. Stir together the sour cream and the blue cheese.
  10. Fill the rolls with steak, onions, peppers and cheddar cheese. Return to the grill, close the lid and cook just until the cheese melts (if the bun starts to burn, move the sandwiches to the upper rack of the grill).
  11. Remove from grill, top with sour cream and green onions. Serve immediately.
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Stout Smoked Ribs with Easy DIY Smoker

Stout Smoked Ribs with Easy DIY Smoker. Once you make ribs this way, you’ll never go back! 

I’m having one of those days. You have them too, I know you do.

When you feel like you’re failing at everything, like you aren’t where you’re supposed to be, like if people really knew you weren’t as sparkly as your Instagram feed suggest they may run away screaming. I don’t even think this feeling, these days, are necessarily bad. It’s just a reminder that we can do better, that the average days aren’t the summation of who we are, that we are capable of more. I heard this quote and decided to just be OK with these days:

"Only the mediocre are always at their best" –Jean Giraudoux

For some reason, this made me feel better. Being at a low just means that there is a high. We just need to figure out how to be more open about these days, instead of forcing all the focus on the highs and disappearing when the low hits. It’s OK. We are all here more often than we admit. I am, and I know you are, too. The highs are easier to share, the pictures take themselves. Let’s just learn how to share a bit of the average, just to make sure that we all see that we aren’t as different as we think we are.

You’ll need this Stout Beer Barbecue Sauce  for this recipe.

I used The Baroness from Fat Bottom Brewery, the name called to me for obvious reasons. I had enough left over to enjoy along side some chocolate stout cake for dessert. So good!

Stout Smoked Ribs with Easy DIY Smoker

Yield: 4-6 servings

Ingredients

    DIY Smoker:
  • 2 cups smoker wood chips
  • 2 cups stout beer
  • Large baking sheet
  • Wire rack
  • Large disposable aluminum baking dish
  • Disposable grill pan (make sure it fits into the baking dish)
  • For the Ribs:
  • 3 lbs pork ribs
  • dry rub
  • Stout barbecue sauce (recipe link above)

Instructions

  1. Add the wood chips to a large bowl. Cover with beer until completely covered. Wood chips will absorb beer, make sure they are fully covered at all times. Soak for 2 hours and up to 24.
  2. Preheat a grill to the lowest setting (hopefully 250-350F).
  3. Add the chips to the baking sheet in an even layer, add a few tablespoons of the smoking liquid. Cover with the wire rack.
  4. Poke several holes in the sides (not the bottom) of the disposable baking dish. Put the grill pan on top of the baking dish.
  5. Dry rub the ribs, place on top of the grill pan. Cover well with aluminum foil, making sure that there is no space for the smoke to escape.
  6. Place the smoker on the grill, close the cover. Allow to cook until the meat is tender and falling off the bone, about 2 hours.
  7. Remove from the grill, turn the grill on high. Brush the ribs with the Barbeque sauce, add the ribs directly to the grates, grilling for about 3 minutes per side.
  8. Cut into individual ribs, serve immediately.

Notes

Depending on the size of your rib rack, you may need to construct two smokers.

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Chocolate Stout Mousse Tart with Bourbon Stout Cherries

Chocolate Stout Mousse Tart with Bourbon Stout Cherries.

Just a few ingredients and 20 minutes! So good, and so easy! 

Growing up poor in America has its advantages. They are obviously less sparkly, with a much lower marquee value than growing up rich, but bear with me. You learn things you’d never learn if you had options to do otherwise. You earn a masters level education in problem-solving.

You learn that there are almost no limits to what you can do with needle nose pliers and duct tape. Your first instinct isn’t "I need help," it’s almost always, "I can figure this out." Like when you’re a teenager,  stuck in Ireland without a ticket home and you’re so sick that you’ve resorted to throwing up in trash cans in the airport terminal and find yourself suddenly alone (that’s a story for another day), you go to your default mode of "how can I fix this?"

The same goes for cooking. You look around your kitchen and think, "what can I make with this?" rather than "I need to go to the store, or order pizza." You become a master of a slim pantry. Which, more or less, is where this recipe came from. What do I have and what can I do with it? This is a skill everyone needs to hone, a conservation of resources that draws out creativity.

I believe everyone should also know how to make a dessert in under 20-minutes without a recipe. Something that leans towards the homemade side.

So here it is, this Chocolate Stout Mousse Tart in cooker terms: "Make a graham cracker crust. Then slowly pour some melted chocolate into whipped cream. I like to melt the chocolate with some stout, and I add powdered sugar to the whipped cream because it’s a stabilizer. Add it tot he crust. Then just chill it for an hour or so and you’re all good"

But if you’re the type that needs a bit more than that, the full normal-person recipe is below.

Chocolate Stout Mousse Tart with Bourbon Stout Cherries. Just a few ingredients and 20 minutes! So good, and so easy!

You’ll need to make some Bourbon Stout Cherries for this recipe.

Chocolate Stout Mousse Tart with Bourbon Stout Cherries

Yield: 8-10 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 sleeve (9 full sized) chocolate graham crackers
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 10 wt oz dark chocolate
  • ½ cup stout beer
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 cup Bourbon Stout Cherries (recipe link above)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Add the graham crackers and sugar to a food processor and process until just crumbs. While the food processor is running add the melted butter and process until well combined. Add to a 9.5 inch tart pan. Starting with the sides, press into shape. Press the crust very well until even and compacted.
  3. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
  4. Add the chocolate and beer to the top of a double boiler set over gently simmering water. Stir until the chocolate has melted. Remove from heat, allow to cool slightly.
  5. In the bowl of a stand mixer add the cream and powdered sugar, building up speed beat on high until medium peaks form. While the mixer is running slowly drizzle the chocolate into the mixer. Once all the chocolate has been added, stop the mixer and remove the bowl. Using a wooden spoon or spatula gently fold until the chocolate and cream have been well combined.
  6. Add the mousse to the tart pan in an even layer, refrigerate until set, about 3 hours.
  7. Top with cherries just prior to serving.
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Chocolate Stout Fudge Sauce

Chocolate Stout Fudge Sauce. Three ingredients and SO good. Win at ice cream.

Chocolate Stout Fudge Sauce. Three ingredients and SO good. Win at ice cream.

This is because I know you, and I know you need this.

You’re like me, I imagine. You like to give things to people, and when you do give the things, you want them to be interesting. You want to go visit your friend on the other coast and you want to bring something, something different. You want to bring something to the party, and you want to make it unique. Me too.

This is great for your own Netflix and Chilled Dairy Products consumption, but it’s also good to give away. A way to one-up that Mother’s Day present, or add something a little special to a hostess gift, or just a way to use what you already have to make yourself look like the Super Star that we both know you are.

It’s also a way to feel less creepy about opening a stout when you’re alone. Because you’re not creepy, you’re awesome. Because you give away boozy chocolate sauce, and everyone likes that.

Chocolate Stout Fudge Sauce

Yield: 1 ½ cup

Ingredients

  • 8 wt oz dark chocolate
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1/3 cup chocolate stout

Instructions

  1. Add all ingredients to a double boiler over gently simmering water.
  2. Stir until melted.
  3. Add to an airtight container, refrigerate until ready to use. Heat slightly for use.
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Chocolate Stout Fudge Sauce. Three ingredients and SO good. Win at ice cream.