Tag Archives: beer

#TBT: Kenzo Bread

This throwback isn’t all that vintage – the recipe was previously featured in the September 24th issue of The Spirit. Better late than never, right?

Each September, Joe and I attend the Newtown Beer Festival with my friend Kate, her husband, and their family. They live close to the location of the event and graciously host an after-party that’s always more fun than the actual beer sampling celebration, complete with plenty of food to absorb a few hours’ worth of sample-sized brewskis, a great playlist, a bonfire and, of course, more beer.

Things have drastically changed for Kate and I: she is expecting her first baby and, as for me, caring for a two-month old and all-day beer sampling aren’t  a good combination – especially the following day.  This year, Kate served as designated driver and we both hung at her house as the rest of the group celebrated the annual “tour de beer.”

We didn’t exclude ourselves, however, from the awesome menu typically served at Kate’s house, and she and I spent the day eating, chatting, and enjoying the beautiful weather on her back porch as Joey was lulled to sleep by the gentle breeze. In the spirit of tradition, I made an easy bread with the help of a bottle of Kenzinger, which was the perfect companion to Kate’s apple laced, fall salad.

Kenzo bread.

Kenzo bread.

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Beer Baked Beans

My slow cooker is one of the only pieces of kitchen equipment I tend to use seasonally. It’s used frequently in the fall and winter, usually for hot and heavy items like stews, and winds up taking a breather in storage from about May until September. Every time I use it, though, I amazed by its reliability and practicality. Read More…

Beer Braised Pot Roast

It’s funny how our tastes change with age. As a kid, I expected Brussels sprouts to taste like fresh, crispy, Iceberg lettuce in miniature form, and was so disgusted when I discovered it to be false. Now, I’m dying to re-introduce myself to the teeny-tiny cabbage (and invite my faithful friend, bacon). My younger self would get away with not eating all of her vegetables and still get dessert, but as an adult I crave corn and steamed carrots. Any item from the ocean only ever crossed my lips if I were duped into eating eat when I was little, yet now I am to shrimp cocktail what Wing Bowl 2011 winner Jon “Super” Squib is to chicken wings.

There are certain dishes I would think were unimpressive (I was a very opinionated child) and could only find them edible with a condiment on the side. For example, pot roast never seemed like a “fun” dish and I’d only finish my dinner  plate with a side of ketchup. As an adult, the thought of braising a chunk of meat for hours in juices and stock and topping it with ketchup is heart-wrenching. Here is a for the comfort-food classic that requires nothing more to dress it up than what is listed below.  Read More…

Oktoberfest Brisket

Cooking makes me feel in control. After a long, hectic day at the office or a busy Sunday running weekend errands, there’s no better way to unwind (in my opinion) than losing oneself in a favorite recipe. The process is rewarding from start to finish, as ingredients are gathered, prepared, and melded together into an edible masterpiece. Results are almost immediate, as each step in a recipe can be considered its own little “to-do”; mentally checking off each directive, and moving on to the next can be considered an accomplishment. I enjoy a challenge in the kitchen, and recipes that require precision and attention to detail seem to be the ones I’m most attracted to.

Though I do appreciate the convenience of being able to combine ingredients in one pot and leave it for a few hours; complete several other tasks on the never ending, real life “to-do” list in the meantime, only to return and have a full meal ready and waiting; slow cooking, or methods that instruct one to “set it and forget it,” do not frequent my stack of recipes I’m waiting to try.  A few weeks ago, when I impulsively purchased a huge slab of brisket, I had (by default) committed myself to the “set it and forget it” motto. Brisket is the cut of beef located in at the lower chest area of the animal, and it contains a large amount of connective tissue which requires a longer cooking time to break down, in turn, creating a tender piece of meat. In a nutshell, it’s well worth the wait. Read More…

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