Steamed Mussels with Ommegang Witte


I wasn't really planning this as a blog post, but I couldn't help but want to take a picture and share it. Truly delicious. I am currently in Lima, Peru visiting all of my family. Eating some delicious food over here! But this I made just before I left. My friend and I were craving some mussels and decided our best bet would be to make them ourselves. No lie, better than any restaurant I've been to. Ommegang Witte was just right for this kind of dish. Nice and bright and citrusy. And delicious cooked in with all that butter and garlic.

I think mussels are such a great dish to make. They are delicious, take just a few minutes to cook, and they are not at all expensive. And it's honestly fun. A combination of my fascination with marine life and of food. They are still alive when you get them! (I love when you tap on them and they close up) And hey they also look kinda Christmasy with the red and green right?


Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds mussels
  • 12 oz Ommegang Witte (or other witbier)
  • 2 plum tomatoes
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 2 shallots
  • juice from 2 lemons
  • a few sprigs of parsley
  • salt to taste
  • olive oil
  • 1 baguette


Remove any beards from the mussels (the little stringy bits hanging out) and wash them. Throw out any mussels that are broken or that don't close when tapped. Chop 3 of the garlic cloves and the shallots. Chop the tomatoes and parsley. In a large pan, melt 1 tablespoon of butter over medium heat. Add the garlic and shallots and simmer for 3 minutes. Add the mussels to the pan and pour in the beer. You can add more or less, 12 oz was just an estimate. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes, or until you see the mussels open. Add the tomatoes, rest of the butter, lemon juice, parsley, and salt. Cook for another 2 minutes. Cut the baguette in half lengthwise and rub with a garlic clove that's been cut in half. Sprinkle with some salt and olive oil and toast in the oven. We also covered the bread in grated parmesan cheese before toasting and sprinkled some on the mussels. Serve mussels with the bread for dipping and pair with the beer.

Sweet Potato Pie Paired With The Bruery's Autumn Maple


Alright, I know I'm a bit late but this is my Thanksgiving post.

So last night I went to a Cigar City beer vs wine dinner at Bash in Sunrise. Five courses, each paired with a beer and a wine. And then everybody votes on each course. Not surprisingly, beer won! But it was nice to go to one of these dinners and taste each course objectively and seriously see how much more I enjoy the beer with each course. I don't want to bash wine, but beer is just so much more versatile and compliments so many dishes incredibly well. My stance on beer was definitely reinforced :) 

Anyway, this year for Thanksgiving I opted for a sweet potato pie instead of a pumpkin pie. It was my first time making a sweet potato pie and I really enjoyed it. Ingredients included brown sugar, maple syrup, cinnamon, and nutmeg. So yummy! Really, who needs a pumpkin pie? 

The Bruery also strays from the typical pumpkin for their Fall seasonal. Their Autumn Maple, a Belgian style brown ale, is brewed with plenty of yams instead of pumpkin. It also uses maple syrup, molasses, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice. So obviously, I had to make my pie again to pair the two. I think that at 10% abv the beer was a little too big for the pie, but it was enjoyable nonetheless.


Well speaking of Thanksgiving, even though it's already been two weeks, I want to share how thankful I am. I have to say I'm happier than I've ever been lately, which if you know me is a pretty big deal. I'm usually pretty jaded, bitter, and anxious. Nice qualities, huh? But I don't know what's wrong with me now. I'm happy. I am loving my new home, I'm really excited to start school next semester, I love all the friends I've been spending time with, and I feel very lucky to be part of the two best labs at FAU. So thanks to everyone that's part of my life right now :) Okay, I'll stop being lame and cheesy now. Back to the recipe.

Ingredients:
  • 3 medium sweet potatoes, cooked
  • 3/4 cup evaporated milk
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 9 inch graham cracker pie crust
Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, mash the cooked potatoes with a fork. Add the rest of the ingredients to the bowl and stir to combine well. Pour the mixture into the pie crust. Bake for 1 hour. Allow to cool in refrigerator and top with whipped cream to serve.