Gruit Whole Grain Mustard-Putting Up with ErinGruit Whole Grain Mustard-Putting Up with Erin

Every Friday afternoon I meet up with a small group (sometimes just myself) of scientists to discuss beer, science, and life in a new town at Earth Eagle Brewings (EEB) in Portsmouth, NH. This new tradition (currently the 6th Friday) started my 3rd day in town when a friend invited me to check out the brewery, which surprisingly very few locals around town are aware of. Small, local, 6 taps on, goldfish crackers all accompanied by the occasional harassment from the surly yet lovable bartenders, EEB specializes in “unique hopped ales popularly known as beer, as well as mysterious un-hopped ales called gruit (groot)… we sometimes add herbs to our beer and occasionally we add hops to our gruits… sometimes brew with fruit and have also employed meat in our creations… using fresh, local, in-season ingredients when available.” This past Friday I decided to gift some jar samples to the lovely bar staff one sample being my pear cider mustard. To say the least, they ate it up… and in no time other bar patrons were asking for a taste of the mustard. Lightbulb- Why not make whole grain mustard using the locally beer brewed by EEB?!?

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Bloody Mary Carrots- Putting Up with ErinBloody Mary Carrots- Putting Up with Erin

As much as I hate to admit it, my relationship with Bloody Marys did not start out as love at first taste. Whether it was because I couldn’t shake the awful taste of store bought canned V8 juice, or because the thick texture gave me the heebie jeebies, tomato juice and I did not play well. A few years back, I was in route to California via a Southwest flight when my stomach started to grumble. As usual, I had skipped breakfast that morning due to my frantic dash to the commuter rail in hopes of not missing my 9am flight. I had absolutely no intentions of shelling out $10 for a breakfast “item” and instead consulted the free refreshment list in search for something… anything.. that would satisfy the hunger pangs till my layover in Denver: tea-nope, soda-nope, Mr. & Mrs. T’s Bloody Mary mix- sure! The spicy, salty, veggie liquid hit the spot and the rest is history.

I was introduced to the green labeled Zing Zang Bloody mix on Christmas morning 2011 when my mother woke me up with my first liquid Xmas gift in bed. Albeit my own homemade mix is probably a bit healthier, I still love myself some spicy Zing Zang! The beautiful color of these pickled carrots lends itself to the fact that I used purple heirloom carrots found at Tendercrop Farms in Dover, NH. In addition to the already spicy mix, I added a good amount of fresh garlic and hot peppers to each pint as I was hoping to achieve the perfect pickle for a future Bloody Mary. Come to think of it, the brine from this recipe would serve well as base in a variety of savory cocktails such as my all time favorite the pickle’tini!

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