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Cooking with Beer

Flavor Explorations Feature
#0929
By: Paula Disbrowe
Cooking with Beer

The craft beer movement has gone from the bar to the kitchen, where crisp lagers, hoppy IPAs and velvety stouts are adding intrigue to a range of savory and sweet dishes. Thanks to the growing availability of local craft brews, it's easy for home cooks to crack open a cold one for inspiration.

Cooking with beer is nothing new, after all: Any culture that loves beer has an iconic dish that's made with it, from Flemish beef stew flavored with dark Belgian style ale to Mexican "drunken" pinto beans, simmered in a beer-infused stock.

Here are more ideas for infusing everyday staples with your favorite brew.

Baking with Beer

Add your favorite crisp lager to this caraway-flecked Quick Beer Bread made with rye flour. To complement the loaf's earthy taste, top each slice with a slather of butter and thin slices of radishes and aged cheese.

Ladle the Lager in Soup

With its hoppy edge and toasty malt flavor, amber lager is a great choice for Beer Cheese Soup. Paired with a crusty baguette, shaved vegetable salad and a pint of the same beer, it's hard to imagine a more satisfying lunch.

Perfect for Braising, Grilling

For a main course, try Brats and Beer, a classic, one-pot braised dish with sauerkraut. Or perk up simple dishes, such as roasted salmon, by adding a glaze made from beer-infused mustard, or ordinary grilled fowl, by making Beer Marinated Chicken.

 

Beer for Dessert?

Lambics, infused with flavors of black currant (cassis), framboise (raspberry) or peche (peche), provide intrigue to raspberry or apple crisp (especially with a spicy kick of ground or crystallized ginger). The bitter edge of stouts like Guinness (a registered trademark of Diageo plc) deepens the cocoa goodness of Chocolate Stout Cupcakes; cream cheese frosting adds a sweet finish.

Paula Disbrowe is a food and travel writer and James Beard Award-winning cookbook author based in Austin, Texas. A regular contributor to Southern Living and Texas Highways, she has contributed to Coastal Living, Bon Appetit and Food & Wine, among other national publications. She's never met a Belgian-style saison that she didn't like.

Spice Islands® spices deliver high quality, authentic flavors from all over the world so you can put the most delicious meals on your table.

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