Crab Cakes / Victory's HopDevil

Crab cakes and IPAs are a great combination. As I said in my last post, IPAs and spicy foods pair well because the hops in the beer can stand up to the spiciness of the dish. And the citrusy hops also work well with seafood. My crab cakes are made with curry powder, which is perfect for hoppy beers. I also tried them with Raging Bitch from Flying Dog and both that and the HopDevil worked pretty well. I've made them with Stone IPA before and that was a perfect combination too, so test out your favorite IPA. You can use canned crab meat or even imitation crab if you want; they will still taste good. Oh and a salad with avocado is a good choice because we realized the beer really enhances the avocado flavor.

1 pound crab meat
1/2 cup minced celery
1/3 cup minced red bell pepper
1/3 cup minced red onion
1 tsp minced garlic
2 tbsp mayonaisse
1/3 cup bread crumbs
1 egg
1 tsp curry powder
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1/8 tsp white pepper
1/4 tsp salt

Saute the celery, garlic, red bell pepper, and onion over medium heat. Once that is cooked combine them with the rest of the ingredients in a large bowl. Form into patties and coat each one with bread crumbs. Fry the patties in vegetable oil on medium heat.

For my sauce I used sour cream, mayo, capers, lemon juice, cilantro, pepper, and basil but I use a different one every time so make whatever you like.

Ceviche / Bell's Two Hearted

My mom made ceviche for lunch today! If you don't know what that is, it's a dish where the fish is basically cooked by lemon or lime juice and salt. This is a typical Peruvian dish, where I happen to be from. So I decided to try it with the last IPA in my fridge: Bell's Two Hearted. In Peru, ceviche is actually traditionally accompanied by beer. I read an article where someone was complaining about how drinking wine with ceviche is blasphemy because it completely overpowers the flavor of the wine, so you might as well just use a beer with it since beer isn't that great anyway ...Don't get me started. Anyway this highlights exactly why beer is so good to pair with foods. There are so many different styles, you're guaranteed to have something that will go well with your meal. And your IPAs will not lose their flavor if paired with a strong dish ;) Well my mom agreed that the Two Hearted tasted great with it. Plus it has a fish on the label so hey. If you want to make this you need to get aji amarillo (Peruvian hot yellow pepper) paste, which you can find at a Latin market. No replacement for that.

Okay well here is the recipe for Peruvian Ceviche:

1 and a 1/2 pounds Tilapia cut into small pieces
The juice of 8 limes
1 tsp aji amarillo paste
garlic powder
1/3 red onion

Cut the fish into small bite sized pieces. Place the fish, lime juice, and aji amarillo in a bowl. Cover with salt. Add some pepper, garlic powder, and cilantro. Cover with sliced red onion. Leave in the refrigerator for at least an hour to allow it to cook through. Serve with sweet potato and corn.

Stuffed Mushrooms/ Ayinger Celebrator

Yayy, stuffed mushrooms! This is pretty much my go to recipe to bring to parties or barbecues. They are really easy to make, always good, and I usually have most of the ingredients lying around. I remember this was the first recipe I made up. I had always loved food but for some reason I never really cooked much. One day I was craving stuffed mushrooms and couldn't go anywhere so I just decided to make them myself. I found some white mushrooms in the fridge and came up with this recipe. I was very pleasantly surprised with how good they turned out using just what I had in the house. That's when I realized how easy cooking is and that you can really make anything you want ^.^

So no beer in this recipe, just a pairing. About a year ago, a few of us decided to make our own beer dinner. A friend and I were in charge of making the five courses while Brian was in charge of beer selection. Since I loved this recipe so much, I used it as my appetizer. Brian got the idea to use this beer from Garrett Oliver's book, The Brewmaster's Table. In the book he mentions mushrooms going well with Ayinger Celebrator. We tried it out and they really complemented each other. The dark and sweet malts from the dopplebock go wonderfully with the earthiness of the mushrooms. So this weekend I decided to redo the pairing :)

And I finally took the time to measure the ingredients since I always just did it by taste so here you go:

24 medium size white mushrooms
1/3 cup chopped red onion
1/2 cup bread crumbs
2 tbsp crumbled blue cheese
1/4 cup grated mozzarella cheese and some for topping
1/3 cup melted butter
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 tbsp parmesan cheese

Take the stems out of the mushrooms and set them aside. Chop the onion and mushroom stems using a food processor. Combine the stems, onions, and the rest of the ingredients in a large bowl. Fill the mushroom caps with stuffing and place on a baking sheet drizzled with olive oil. Top each mushroom with grated mozzarella cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes.

La Fin Du Monde Crab Chowder

Okie dokie, well beer in soup is just awesome. We've all had beer cheese soup (and if you haven't, you should). It gives it this unique yummy flavor. I made this with Duvel a while back because I had a few of them and wanted to try one for cooking. I guess it's the first thing I made with beer. I was searching for ideas of what Duvel would be good for and I came across the idea of a crab soup. This time I decided to try with La Fin Du Monde from Unibroue and it also turned out great. Belgian strong pale ales and tripels work well but you can experiment with anything you like (after all, that's half the fun). Taste it as you go along and change whatever you like. It's all about what feels and tastes right to you :D

4 and 1/2 cups milk
1 cube chicken or fish bouillon
3 tbsp butter
2 tsp salt
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tbsp parmesan cheese
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup chopped celery
1 plum tomato
1 tsp minced garlic
2 cans of crab meat
1/4 tsp white pepper
6 ounces beer
2 tbsp flour

Chop the onion, garlic, celery, and tomato very finely. Start cooking them in a pot with some butter on medium heat until the onion becomes transparent. Add 4 cups of milk and the rest of the ingredients, except the flour. Dissolve the flour in half a cup of milk and add slowly to the hot pot stirring as you go. Keep cooking and stirring until it becomes a creamy consistency. Adjust anything to your taste. Tada! Enjoy!

Well, I think my next few posts might be about recipes to pair with beer. I'm thinking stuffed mushrooms will be next. Then maybe crabcakes, sweet potato gnocchi, or some kind of sandwich. We'll see :)

Oh and if you have any ideas for any dishes let me know and I'll see what I can come up with.

Schneider Aventinus Apple Pastry

This is a puff pastry filled with apples that were cooked in Aventinus and brown sugar. I really like sweet with salty in my desserts so I added some blue cheese, which goes great with apples. I had made something like this with wine before and Brian suggested that Aventinus might work. The dark fruits from the beer really worked well with it and you could also drink one to pair with it. :)

2 apples
1/2 cup brown sugar
12 ounces Schneider Aventinus
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
crumbled blue cheese for topping
puff pastries
2 tablespoons butter
1 egg

Makes 6 pastries.
Peel the apples and cut them into chunks. Place the beer, brown sugar, cinnamon, butter, and apples in a pot and cook on high heat. Cook until the beer and sugar become syrupy. Cut the puff pastry into squares and place some of the apples in the middle of a square. Beat the egg with a little bit of water and brush it on the corners of the square. Place another square of puff pastry on top and seal the corners. Brush the top with some egg wash as well. Repeat this with the rest of the apples, reserving some of the syrup for the top. Place the pastries in a 400 degree oven for about 10 to 15 minutes until golden brown. Toast some walnuts on a pan with butter (or oil) and some cinnamon and salt. Add the crumbled blue cheese, walnuts, and syrup to the pastry. All done! :)

Sierra Nevada Kellerweis Shrimp and Scallops with Creamy Coconut Sauce and Papaya Salsa

So I've decided to start posting recipes of things I cook with beer. Or foods I pair with beer. I usually just throw things in as I see fit so the amounts are estimates. I'll try to get better at actually recording things. I'm no professional chef but I don't think you need real training to make tasty food :)

Well, that's my disclaimer and here is my first recipe:

1/2 pound bay scallops
1/2 pound peeled white shrimp
1 tbsp butter
shallots (or onion)
minced garlic
garlic powder
1 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup Sierra Nevada Kellerweis (or hefeweizen of your choice)

1/2 papaya
1/2 mango
1/4 red bell pepper
1/4 of a red onion
1 tbsp lime juice

Serves 2. Melt butter on a pan and add shallots and minced garlic. Saute shrimp and scallops for a few minutes and add coconut milk and beer, cooking until creamy. Season with garlic powder and salt.

For the salsa, chop the papaya, mango, red bell pepper, and onion. Combine with chopped cilantro and lemon juice. Serve with sour dough bread and a beer ^_^