Category Archives: recipe

Turkey Potstickers with Spicy Sweet Gingerbread Beer Dip

Do you guys remember a few weeks ago when I got a delicious present in the mail?
AM2I was sent some of Bison Brewing’s Organic Gingerbread Ale from the owner of the company to develop some recipes and pairings. I wracked my brain for ideas and finally came up with a stroke of beery-genius last night after making homemade potstickers. They were tasty but not quite mind-blowing, and the spicy sauce I served them with was overpowering and unbalanced. A lightbulb switched on and I remade them for lunch today with some boozy additions.
am15California and Colorado – these two were made for each other.
[gmc_recipe 6724]
am4I’ve always loved making balsamic reductions for salads and ice cream, and decided to go for it with this beer as well. For this recipe, I recommend starting the Gingerbread Ale reduction while you assemble the potstickers.
am5Combine the brown sugar and Gingerbread Ale, whisk together and set to simmer for about 40 minutes or until reduced by half.
am9That’s about right. Remove it from the heat, whisk in the hot sauce and pour it into a serving dish.
amCombine the first twelve ingredients and prepare for a hassle with some wonton wrappers. The hassle is worth it, I promise you.
am6Wet the edges of the wonton wrappers with water and place a teaspoon of the filling in the center, being careful not to overstuff it.
am7Fold the wonton wrapper over and press the edges to seal in the goodness.
am8Repeat until all your filling is used up.
am10Put ’em in a hot pan and brown each side.
am2Pour in just enough vegetable stock to coat the bottom of the pan and immediately place a lid on top to steam these bad boys for another minute.
am13Serve them immediately, paired with a Bison Brewing Organic Gingerbread Ale to tame the flame from the spicy sauce.
am14This is a sauce I think even the Heat Freaks can get behind! Enjoy!

Any recipes you’d like me to beerify? Have you ever beerified a recipe?


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Wilted Kale and Quinoa Salad with Maple-Glazed Pecans

How’s everyone faring after the long, intensive weekend of leftovers?
amOur second Thanksgiving was stuffed full of butter and excessive amounts of meat, just because. We had to make up for the vegan binge the night before.
AM1Since that fateful day, we’ve been starting each morning with a kale smoothie. Of course, the kale smoothie might just happen to come after I’ve eaten more leftovers, but I feel like it kind of balances it out, right?

Today I’m bringing the recipe for that kale salad that we had on Thanksgiving. I think I’ll be making it again for Christmas dinner with the addition of some roasted pomegranate arils!
AM7[gmc_recipe 6674]
AM10This salad is pretty easy to put together once you’ve done the rinsing and chopping. We had leftover quinoa in the fridge so we didn’t have to labor over that for half an hour.
AM2Toasting the pecans.
AM3Maple-glazed! This makes the salad!
AM4So does the white balsamic vinegar – Cara-Cara Orange/Vanilla from my favorite olive oil shop in Fort Collins.
AM6Throw everything into a bowl and top with warmed quinoa, then toss.

I hope you’re all having a good start to the week! I’m off to another day at the brewery and I couldn’t be happier with my life. Prost!

What are your post-Thanksgiving cleansing foods/plans?

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Spinach Pesto Sauce

Happy Halloween!
am1I hope you’re all hydrating in preparation for the undoubtedly crazy partying you’ve got planned for the evening! Here’s that pesto recipe I promised you yesterday – stuffed full of healthy spinach, tangy lemon juice and vegan-friendly! I promise you it’s just as good, if not better, than any traditional pesto. And it holds up perfectly to pumpkin ale, or any herb/spice beers.
[gmc_recipe 6494]
I used part of this batch on the homemade pizza we made the other day, and this afternoon tossed it with some al dente pasta for a quick and easy (and healthy) lunch.
am2After all the candy binging you may happen to do tonight, this will be the perfect “pick me up” to help get you back on track to start your November on the right foot. Holy crap, I can’t believe tomorrey is November.
am3In other news: the recipe page has been updated yet again! There’s a new batch of pancake recipes, vegetarian spaghetti squash lasagna and green Thai curry among other things. Peruse and drool.

Happy Halloween to all! Have a wonderful, safe evening and use a designated driver! Cheers!

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Simple Kitchen Sink Soup

It’s been quiet around here. Quiet and calm. Until yesterday. Apparently, funemployment is coming to an end shortly, one way or the other. Since the end of my peaceful, quiet and calm time is looming, I’ve been soaking up as much time as I can in the kitchen, hiking in the brisk mornings, and lazing about on the couch watching reruns of terrible, terrible shows on Netflix. Quality time.
am1The herb garden has hit its end thanks to the repetitive cold frosts we’ve awoken to every morning. I’ve been taking handfuls of dried herbs from this bowl and crumbling them into almost every recipe I’ve created. Including the homemade stock I used for this one.
amSimple Kitchen Sink Soup. I was hoping to make a split pea soup to warm up with and then realized that there were no split peas in the house. Lentils it is! The wonderful thing about this recipe – you can throw anything you want into that pot. I had some carrots, celery and onions that were about to peak, so those were my choices.
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I also had plenty of spent grain from my snow day brew day. It was necessary to make some whole grain bread with that.
am2I may have forgotten to allow it to rise the second time… Ah well. Still delicious.
am3Smear a slice of this with honey butter and your life will be complete. Bread recipe coming soon!

What’s your favorite autumn recipe? Please share links!


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Pumpkin Spiced Maple Kettle Corn

We had our first snow of the season this morning!
snow1We only got a quick flurry that melted almost immediately up north, but I’ll take what I can get!
snow2The mountains have a wonderfully chilly coating that we’re hoping will stick around. Since the pup doesn’t appreciate taking breaks from his daily walks due to weather, I threw on a hat and fuzzy gloves and braved the freezing air. Once we were back in the warm house in front of the fireplace, I started a crockpot split pea soup with ham shanks and then got to business on a recipe idea that’s been dancing in my head since I saw the first bottle of pumpkin beer on the store shelf.
am1[gmc_recipe 5995]
popcorn2This popcorn is a perfect blend of salty and sweet, with a wonderful hint of warm spice. I’m off to enjoy the snowy view with a hot bowl of homemade soup. Happy Friday!

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Protein-Packed Butternut Squash and Leek Soup

It’s the last day of September and I think it’s past time to start in on copious amounts of deliciously warming autumn recipes. This soup is from an adaptation I made three years ago on the blog, but this time I added red lentils for a punch of protein – a perfectly rounded out vegan dish.
AM[gmc_recipe 5526]
Butternut SoupI garnished this with my spicy-sweet roasted squash seeds, also from an old blog recipe, and paired it with one of my favorite pumpkin beers – Elysian Night Owl.
AM4And now, I’m off to enjoy this gorgeous day with a mountain bike ride! Happy trails!


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Seared Sesame Ahi Tuna with Zucchini Salad

Now that I have access to a complete kitchen, I’ve had the chance to get back to one of the ultimate joys in my life – cooking! First up, I decided to recreate the delicious meal kindly prepared for me by the lovely Janelle, with a few tweaks inspired by our visit to LAB Brewing.
[gmc_recipe 5206]
AMI paired this with something I traditionally wouldn’t recommend, but it seemed necessary.
AM3Our family homebrew Yeti clone!
AM4Our pup, Barleywhine (yes, that is actually his name), seemed to think the recipe and pairing was good.

Last night I decided to immerse myself into more of the beer culture of Northern Colorado.
AM1The Verboten Sisterhood meets weekly at the brewery in Loveland.
AM2IN the brewery in Loveland, to be exact. I grabbed a pint of their Angry Banjo Kentucky Common and enjoyed the ambiance as the ladies filtered in, glasses in hand.
AM6After beer nerd chatting and displays of how to pour the perfect beer, one of the Verboten founders, Angie, brought out this devil. I had a few sips and found it necessary to tamper the heat with another snifter of Yeti clone when I got home.
AM5Also… found these on the shelves at a liquor store. No limit. Bought out the shelf. One for sipping now and three to age.

Have I mentioned that I love Colorado yet? Because I do. I really do.


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Daniel Irons Oatmeal Stout French Toast

Superbowl Sunday morning. Lazy cups of coffee slowly sipped, pans gently warmed over the stove, a beer cracked open… Wait, what?
AM4French toast soaked in oatmeal stout. It seriously doesn’t get any better than this!

I recently and belatedly came across The Beeroness and after perusing every single recipe on her site and subsequently wiping up the drool, I decided that it was time to start cooking. Since I happen to have anytime access to Enegren Brewing’s beers, I used their sweet rich, chocolatey oatmeal stout.

Daniel Irons Oatmeal Stout French Toast – Printable recipe available HERE.
(Lightly adapted from The Beeroness)
1 loaf challah bread, left out overnight to slightly stale
1 cup almond milk
1 cup Enegren Brewing Company’s Daniel Irons Oatmeal Stout (or any rich, malty stout)
4 eggs
1/2 cup brown sugar, tightly packed
1 tsp pure almond extract
2-3 tsbp butter

1. Slice the challah bread into 1-inch thick slices.
2. In a large bowl, combine the almond milk, stout, eggs, brown sugar and almond extract and stir until all sugar is dissolved.
3. Pour the mixture into a large flat pan for easier dipping.
4. Places the slices of challah into the mixture for 1 minute on each side.
AM15. Heat 1 tbsp butter in a skillet over medium heat and place the soaked bread to cook, 2-4 minutes each side or until cooked through.
AM26.Place on a large plate, top with powdered sugar, maple syrup and pair with a beer coffee. Try to grab a slice before three hungry brewers devour the entire loaf.
AM3Prost and bon appetit!

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Whole Wheat Sugarless Banana Cake Bread

Exciting news all around: I’m back to baking! I’ve missed having the time and the creativity to whip up some deliciousness in the kitchen, so I’m going overboard with it now.

But first: Friday was my last day at Wolf Creek as assistant brewer. While I had a wonderful few months there hauling grain, scrubbing out mash tuns, brewing delicious beer and having some awesome bragging rights, I truly missed being able to connect with those drinking the beer and being able to explain to them why the beer they were tasting had that citrus or banana aroma, or how adding the hops earlier in the boil makes the beer more bitter, or urging them to visit all the local craft breweries that Southern California boasts to expand their horizons and open their minds and steins to the beauty of the beer. That was a ridiculously long sentence.

A few weeks ago I was at Enegren during the middle of the day when a group happened to swing by. There were beer distributors in this group – something I’ve been wanting to do for the past two years. I asked how they got into distribution, they asked me if I was interested and told me they were looking to hire a craft beer specialist and I had an interview the following week. Beginning October 1st I’ll be working with this distribution company and eventually/hopefully bringing the awesomeness of local craft beer to bars and restaurants in SoCal.

NOW back to baking! I’ve recently begun a new workout regime AND eating healthy. I was perusing the interwebs for banana bread that had no sugar, made a recipe that totally flopped, decided to make modifications and came up with this cake bread.

Don’t be scared: There’s no artificial sugar here and as long as you’re not expecting traditional buttery, extremely sweet banana bread, you’ll survive.
[gmc_recipe 5614]

The riper the bananas, the better. I had a craving for banana bread and just couldn’t wait.
Hydrate ’em!
Drain ’em! Chop ’em!
Mash ’em!
Add ’em!
Stir the raisin bits into the dry ingredients.
Pour the banana mixture on top of the dry ingredients.
Stir until just combined. Do not overstir or you’ll get tough, unfluffy bread cake! That would be disastrous.
Spread into a pre-greased pan. You could probably put this in a loaf pan as well, but the baking time will vary.
Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Let sit for 5-10 minutes, or as long as you can hold out before slicing and diving in face first.
Again, my disclaimer: This is NOT your traditional sweet banana bread! It’s mildly sweet with little bursts of sweet sunshine from the rehydrated raisins, dense and chewy. I’ve been having a square of this with the rest of my healthy breakfast every morning.



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Beer Pairing: Sweet and Sour Chicken

Welcome to the second edition of pairing food and beer! This recipe is compliments of my mumsie who threw a bunch of random things into a bowl and made delicious magic!
[gmc_recipe 5635]

Deliciousness marinating!
Spread in one layer so all the vegetables are cooked evenly.

This is a hearty, filling meal with a lovely tangy sweetness. I’d recommend pairing this dish with a rich nut brown ale or any other sweet malty beer to really emphasize the caramelized sugars that form as a crust on the pineapple after it’s baked in the oven. If possible, drink local!
Enegren Brewing’s Valkyrie California Alt – rich, malty and a smooth finish. The residual sugars in this match perfectly with the marinated chicken and vegetables.
Island Brewing Company’s Nut Brown Ale – this one is a little drier, but still has enough malty sweetness and roasty back-end to enhance the sweet marinade reduction. If you want to be blown away, throw a handful of roasted peanuts on top, combine with a nut brown and let your taste buds go crazy!

Some mainstream beers that would pair well with this dish:
Samuel Smith’s Nut Brown Ale – rich malts and a toasted nutty finish with just a touch of hops.
Chimay Premiere (Red) – sweet dried fruits and a relatively dry end.
Sierra Nevada’s Tumbler – hints of chocolate and toasted nuts with medium high carbonation and light sweetness.

I’m sure there are plenty more! If you make this, share your beer pairing choices!


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