“Bartender… What is the most offensive pumpkin beer you carry? Like so offensive that you’d never drink a full pint of it?” Yep, ’tis the season for booze based canned goods… My favorite season. First up this year: a whole grain pumpkin ale mustard. Last week my boss and I played hosts for 20 plus agency scientists from around the U.S. After 3 days chock full of debating/brainstorming I suggested we take the crew to The Glass Jug in Durham, NC for some tasty brews. After some discussion amongst the bartenders they decided that Pumpking Imperial Ale from Southern Tier was my best bet. Why offensive you may ask? Basically for flavor- to taste the underlying pumpkin notes over the strong mustard tang. Mixed with some maple agave syrup and brown sugar this fall time mustard is sure to prepare your palate for the seasonal flavors to come.
After an exhausting and downright emotional couple of days, breaking out the canner, drinking my 8.6% left over ingredients, watching a stupid comedy, and playing with a mix of fall flavors last night was exactly what I needed. Interested in other booze based mustards? Check out my other recipes here.
Curious canning newbie: “What are you up tonight?”
Me: “Canning jam. You?”
Curious canning newbie: “Ha, aren’t you the party animal…”
Me: “You know me, wild Friday night. Want to get weird and come over to learn how to can?”
Curious canning newbie: “OMG that sounds amazing, I’ll bring the wine!!”
Don’t you just love it when others are equally excited about your nerdy hobby as you are?!? Last night a couple of friends joined me at my place for an impromptu canning demo. Completely as expected, chaos ensued and the story involved an emergency dash to the neighbors to borrow a whisk, one too many glasses or wine/cider, and magenta jam all over my tiny kitchen. I decided to revisit the idea of using beer as a jam base and this time employed Earth Eagle Brewings‘ Barelyberry pilsen gruit saison. EEB’s Barelyberry is an ale brewed with labrador tea, sage, yarrow and blackberries. Light fruit character throughout with a refreshing spice and faint blackberry finish. I hadn’t planned on adding anything other than pectin, sugar and lemon juice to the ale based jam, but after further thought and MANY taste tests 🙂 , I decided to go ahead and throw in some fresh blackberries to boost that “faint blackberry finish”. If you have any issues tracking down a berry gruit, just substitute in any other berry ale of your choosing.
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?!?
People do funny things when they know they only have a limited amount of time left to do it… Take my current situation, I am house hopping all over Baltimore, enticing my friends with strong drinks, canned goods, and kitchen adventures. Earlier this week, a beautiful friend of mine suggested that we team up and make a smattering of baked goods inspired by a select few of my sweet canned creations. As this past Monday was Saint Patrick’s Day, we saw it only fitting to start with an Irish inspired beer bread topped with a generous amount of my Chocolate Stout Jelly. Sticky, snorting, sugar filled madness ensued as we destroyed the limited countertop space of Steph’s tiny Mt. Vernon apartment kitchen. This super easy and super quick beer bread recipe was adapted from the Joy of Cooking.
What’s more fun than spilling mustard seeds all over the kitchen? Cleaning them up while drinking the 10% IPA you bought for your beer mustard recipe. I’ve recently began experimenting with alcohol based canned goods; in doing so, I have found that the process of selecting the right beverage, experiencing the angst of the outcome, and then drinking the leftovers is sometimes more enjoyable than the canned product itself. While the quality of the finished product is ultimately what I strive for, if it wasn’t for the accidental spills, the burns, and the occasional mishaps, I think I’d quickly bore. Then again, maybe that’s just me.
At first (this might have been because I tasted it while it was still warm), the high alcohol content of Sneaky Pete Imperial IPA gave this mustard a pungent ale aftertaste. After setting for a few days, the sharp aftertaste has subsided leaving it with just a hint of a strong ale taste. That being said, I do plan on re-making this recipe with either a more subtle IPA, a farmhouse ale, or a hard-cider like the mustard recipe found here. When I think of beer-based mustard I think bratwurst and pretzels, and therefore I’ve always assumed that beer-based mustard originated in Germany. It turns out that beer mustard actually originated in the Midwest US during the 20th century.
What kinds of mustards or other beer inspired things are you guys making this season?
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