Beer Dinner

Helloo.. I just wanted to write about the beer dinner some friends and I had on Friday. We had one over a year ago at our friend Tyler's house and we had been meaning to do another one for a while. We finally got around to it this week. I cooked the five courses and Brian was in charge of beers. I spent a lot of the day cooking and I was a little nervous I wouldn't be able to pull it all off but I was very happy with how the dinner turned out. All the pairings were wonderful and the portions were just right. I'll tell you a little about each course.

1. The first course was a butternut squash soup. We paired it with Brooklyner-Schneider Hopfen-Weisse. The soup had apples and cinnamon and nice cozy warm flavors. We wanted to pair it with something that had some interesting spice flavors but that wouldn't overpower the subtlety of the soup. The hints of clove and spice from the Bavarian yeast strain in the beer complemented the soup pretty nicely. I'll try to post the recipe for the soup later this week.

2. The second course I already have a recipe for on here:

It's creamy shrimp and scallops cooked in coconut milk and beer, served with a mango and papaya salad. I cooked the shrimp and scallops with Hitachino Nest White Ale and it turned out delicious. Definitely one of my favorites. We also paired it with the the same beer. All the components worked so well together. The sour dough bread with the tartness and wheat flavors of the beer.. and the subtle coconut milk flavor in the seafood.. and the mango and papaya.. mm good stuff.

3. The third course: Ceviche with Stone Cali-Belgique. Ceviche recipe here:

I've read around to see what people pair ceviche with and it's often a sour beer to go with the sour flavors in the ceviche. We didn't want to take that route and since I had already had success in pairing it with an IPA, we decided to try that again. I'm glad we chose this beer. The brightness of both the beer and the dish worked really well together.And of course I have to serve my ceviche with some buttery and sugary sweet potato. Yum.

4. On to the fourth course. The main course, and I think the highlight of the dinner. Big Sound braised beef brisket and mashed potatoes paired with Cigar City's Big Sound Scotch Ale. This pairing was just perfect harmony. I braised the brisket for four and a half hours in the Big Sound along with brown sugar, soy sauce, veggies, and a bunch of other flavors that I will talk about when I post the recipe. It was so tender and delicious. The rich flavors of the brisket just flowed wonderfully with that delicious scotch ale.

Here is a picture from when I practiced with Old Chub from Oskar Blues:

5. At this point everyone was on their way to getting full but we still had two desserts to go. While my apple pastry was in the oven, we had a dessert that Anavictoria made: cheesecake cupcakes with Ghirardelli chocolate and a sugar cookie crust. We paired that with Mokah, a delicious chocolate and coffee imperial stout from Southern Tier. It was a great complement to the cheesecake. The roasty flavors of the beer balanced the sweetness of the dessert.

6. Lastly we had my Aventinus apple pastry with blue cheese and toasted walnuts.

I love the blue cheese in this dessert. It makes it so much more interesting and it's a nice balance to the sweetness of the apples. If you haven't tried blue cheese with desserts or fruits, you're missing out. It's magical :) The apples were cooked in Aventinus with brown sugar and cinammon. Aventinus is perfect for this because of its dark fruit flavors. The filling is really tasty, and I had a lot of it left over so we've been eating it with ice cream and cooking it into crescent rolls. Good stuff :)

And that was the end of it. So thanks to the Landis family for hosting the dinner and thanks to everyone who came. I hope you all enjoyed yourselves. I can't wait for the next one! ^.^