100 Ways to Use Beer in Food and Drinks: #14 Cake

Upon skimming through the latest version of Cooking Light, we fell upon a “breads” section—correction—“quick breads” section. You’re wondering why I’d be skimming through Cooking Light? The gf has a subscription and you do know I’m watching my girlish figure… Anyway, we decided to go with the maple stout “quick bread” recipe since I had some of my homebrew stouts left.

But first: I’ve come to the conclusion that the jerks at Cooking Light have some gall to call this thing bread…er “quick bread.” I have no f’ing clue what the hell quick bread is, but this thing is cake…and I’m proud of it. I’m not doing research on what quick bread is either—I don’t want to know. Okay, now we can move on.

I got out my Vanilla Cafe Con Leche Stout and we started baking. Typically, when the two of us do some form of cooking/baking, there is an ample amount of bickering  (and in my case, exaggerated *sighs*) occurring.  However, this time we did well as a team; I had a good feeling about this.

The cake came out really well, with rave reviews from the fam. Probably the best of these cooking with beer recipes to date.  I claim fame to this recipe for two reasons:

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Endless Ice Cream: Coffee-Maple-Bacon

My house in the summer gets disgustingly, unbearably hot. I once clocked 96 degrees in our living room. This means the oven pretty much gets a three-month vacation starting in June. However, no air conditioning can be the mother of invention. I’m forced to grill everything (I’ve made pizza, soup, bread, even lasagna on the grill), or get creative with no-cook and make-ahead recipes. This ice cream is in anticipation of those sticky, crabby mornings where it’s so hot I dream about moving to Alberta.

Whole bean coffee is steeped in cream, then cooked into a custard base. Maple syrup is whisked into the chilled custard. Then after it’s churned you fold in some pre-made chopped, candied bacon.

So there you have it: coffee, bacon, eggs, and maple syrup. Ice cream breakfast. If you’re lucky enough to have air conditioning, make pancakes and scoop this on top of ’em. I guess I’ll be tinkering with cast iron skillet pancakes on the grill.

Coffee-Maple-Bacon Ice Cream

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A Dashing Brie

Twin Tastes here. For those of you who enjoyed our Cyprus-inspired melty cheese, here is another sweet and savory appetizer with a major KICK.

We first created the oozing brie after touring the Ryan & Wood Distilleries in historic Gloucester, MA.  After sampling the copper-colored rum, our minds churned with ideas for how we could incorporate the dark, robust flavor in cooking. To tie in our New England routes, we incorporated Vermont maple syrup. Cooking down the rum with the maple syrup  subdues the intense, robust flavor and creates a subtle, sweet, caramel-like topping for the buttery wedge of cheese. To add a little texture, we stirred in some toasted pecans. The firm spicy ginger snaps and tangy apple slices hold up to the incredible mess of the luscious wedge.

Rum, Maple and Pecan Topped Brie

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Dear Bisquick: Suck On This

Pretty much all I think about is breakfast. Okay, I might think about more than that. However, I would call myself a breakfast freak. Flapjacks are among my favorite breakfast foods. On a quest for the “no foolin’, best pancake recipe ever,” I stumbled up this little gem that is too good not to share. It is pretty basic, but why fix a squeaky wheel if it isn’t broken…wait…

With a little tweak, I think this pretty much puts Bisquick in a corner for a permanent time out. Who uses Bisquick anyway? It contains solid hydrogenated oils which means it doesn’t need refrigeration and can keep on a shelf for ages. Anything that can keep on a shelf for ages kind of grosses me out. Mmmmm…trans fats. Delicious!


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America’s Top 10 New Sandwiches — Veganized

Our recent article on America’s Top 10 New Sandwiches has caused quite a stir in the blogosphere, but no one was more riled up  than a group of spunky vegan bloggers. Their de facto leader, Namely Marly, explains:

We read this article with great curiosity but it didn’t take long until the curiosity faded and was replaced with something else. OK. We were grossed out. Particularly at one sandwich that referred to an ingredient called suckling pig. We hoped this was a reference to something other than the obvious, but it appears it is exactly as it sounds. Only one of the 10 sandwiches appeared to be vegetarian. We felt like a cross between Stan Laurel and Rodney Dangerfield, scratching our heads with a half whimper and half scowl thinking, “Why don’t we vegans get any respect?”

So they decided to demand their own respect, teaming together to create tasty and healthy versions of each cholesterol-laden entry on the list of America’s Top 10 New Sandwiches. Hence, America’s Top 10 New Sandwiches — Veganized. Here are all ten of ’em. Follow the links for recipes.

10. The Vegan Spuckie

We called this olive-carrot-mortadella goodness from Cutty’s in Boston “the one sandwich that most successfully merges the old-school method of overdoing it on Italian meats with the new world of artisan, veggie-centric goodness.” Drop the meat part and it’s still drool-worthy. Trina Jaconi Biery of Your Vegan Mom made her own meat-free mortadella, featured here on a ciabatta roll topped with vegan mozzarella and a sweet carrot-olive salad.

Recipe: The Vegan Spuckie

(Photo: Trina Jaconi Biery)

9. Vegan Bulgogi Steak Sandwich

When Allyson Kramer of Manifest Vegan learned there was a Bulgogi Steak Sandwich (from Koja in Philly) on the list, she jumped at the chance to veganize it. As a child she used to eat bulgogi steak sometimes twice a week. Now a vegan, she’s been hankering to try a veggie-friendly version. Served on a hoagie roll (Allyson even provided a recipe for gluten-free hoagie if that’s to your liking), marinated tofu is topped with caramelized peppers and onions, chili garlic sauce, and melted vegan mozz.

Recipe: Tofu Bulgogi Steak Sandwich

(Photo: Allyson Kramer)

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Aunt Jemima’s Lies

I recently pulled my mom out of maple syrup ignorance when I told her the cheap Aunt Jemima syrup probably did not contain any real maple, just corn syrup and other artificial flavorings. She reported back that maple is the sixth ingredient listed, which means that there is probably little of the tree juice in that plastic bottle.

She was bummed. She felt duped. Unfortunately a lot of the foods I grew up on were fakes. But nothing came close to the fake that is Walden Farms’ “peanut” spread that I found at a convenience store in Seattle. The first tip off – the spread claimed to be-calorie free. With a slight turn of the jar I uncovered that it was free of many other items as well: fat, sugar, cholesterol, carbohydrates and gluten. And of course, no animals or animal by-products were used in the production of this spread—it’s vegan.

So what the hell was in this magical jar?

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