Out of every Darkness; Light.

I had intended to make this, our second post back after a long hiatus, about some of the REAL reasons we took such a long sabbatical (not just laziness) but it just doesn’t seem right.

Reason being, in the early morning of January 29nd, I found out I lost one of my absolute dearest friends. Her name is Elle and my heart is broken.

I can go on and on about all the lives she has touched, the wonderful things she has done, the sweet jewelry she has made and the delicious food she has cooked (She had an amazing food blog called Elle’s New England Kitchen). I can tell you all about her loving husband, her beautiful children, her darling corgis, her rescued cats from Turkey (you heard that right kids, Turkey.) I can wax poetic about her for hours. Probably even days. But I find myself falling silent when people who didn’t know her like I did ask me about her.

All I can mouth is she was one fucking amazing friend.

And then my heart weeps.

Soon perhaps.

Elle

My pal Elle. With pink hair. How stinkin’ cool was she?!

Till then, know this. This earth. The lives on it. My life. Have all changed because of knowing her. And we shall all change from losing her. The one simply known as Elle.

I am a firm believer that out of every darkness comes light. And I can already see it. I won’t disappoint you dear friend. Me and my fierce creatures shall carry on the way only you could have dreamed.

Only seems fitting I should wrap up this post with a Scoop-a-Palooza recipe.

This one was in our yearly World Class Beer calendar a couple years ago. (The calendar is full of recipes that all include beer.) Anyway, during one of oh so many conversations Elle & I had about our obsession with ice cream, and scoop-a-palooza (our blog ode to ice cream if you will) the subject of beer ice cream came up. And cider sorbet. And if I recall correctly, the conversation ended pretty quickly after that so we could run to the store and get fixins for such delectables. For her, Woodchuck Draft Cider Sorbet. For me, this Hard Apple Cranberry Sorbet.

I never knew what her’s tasted like and she never knew mine. I like to think they would have tasted wonderful together. A sorbet that could take over the world.

Hard Apple Cider Cranberry Sorbet

Hard Apple Cider Cranberry Sorbet

2 hard apple ciders
1 pound fresh cranberries
1 3/4 cups of granulated sugar*
2 Tablespoons Gran Marnier or Cointreau or Curacao (Or your favorite orange liqueur)

In a heavy bottomed sauce pan bring the hard cider to a boil. Add the sugar and stir till dissolved. Add the cranberries and let simmer, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries burst (10-15 minutes). Remove from heat and add the orange liqueur.

Puree’ the cranberry mixture until it is as smooth as you can get it, discarding any stubborn solids.

Cover and refrigerate until cold, about 4 hours (overnight is best).

When ready to process, remove from the refrigerator and give it a quick stir to bring the mixture together and then follow the directions for your manufacturer’s ice cream maker.

*(This may be altered slightly depending on the sweetness of the cider you choose.)

Cooked up by Heather ~ 8 Comments

Smoked Porter Beef Ribs

Hello out there?

Hello?

Anyone there?

Well I guess the silence is expected since we decided to take a long sabbatical.  I wish I could say it was for something cool like climbing Mt. Everest, or being granted a year at Club Fed for being drunks, or living among the pygmy people, or whatever weird thing we come up with at 2 a.m. after one to many Bell’s 2 Hearted.

The truth simply sucks….laziness.

One thing we did at least manage to complete was the 4th annual Cooking with Beer calendar so go us!  This is a cool project we do for World Class Beer, a major beer distributor in Indianapolis and is something we are always excited to complete.

2014 WCB Calendar

Okay. Cards on the table. We are happy when it is done but no lie, there are a couple of moments during the creation phase in which walls have been known to magically bleed pasta sauce and pans magically fly off the stove and across the room (yes I know it sounds like I am throwing the pans but come on do you think I am ever going to admit that to Heather? So I stick with the simple excuse that our kitchen is haunted).

One thing we still have a small obsession with is our grills and smokers.  Even in zero degree Indiana weather we still manage to use them constantly.

Smoked Porter Beef Ribs

Smoked Porter Short Ribs

For this recipe you will need:

  • 2# of flanked style beef ribs (these are the Asian style beef ribs that are cut against the bone and 1/4 inch thickness)
  • 1 shallot or 1/2 small onion diced  finely
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic diced finely
  • 1 cup of beer (we used Stone’s Smoked Porter but any dark beer like a stout or non-smoked porter will work)
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 tablespoon honey

Now it gets very hard.

  • Take everything but the beef ribs and stir like mad to combine (we cheated and used a food processor).
  • Put everything in a large Ziploc bag with the beef ribs and marinate for 6 or so hours (we just started it in the morning before going to work).
  • Drain the beef ribs and discard the marinade
  • Fire up your grill to hot.  If you lack a grill a cast iron skillet works very good.
  • Cook the beef ribs for 4-5 minutes a side (common sense says if it starts to burn lower the heat).  You definitely want them to be a little pink on the inside.

Serve and enjoy.

 

 

Cooked up by Jeff ~ 2 Comments

Peach Lambic Pork Chops

It is finally spring (sorta) here in Indiana. And by spring I mean 70° one day and 40° the next.

I love sitting outside with the sun on my face, a cold beer in my hand, a balmy breeze blowing the meat scented grill smoke my way. Should be a cologne that smells like grilling meat.

Unfortunately lately it has been raining like crazy and the wind has been fierce and our dinner time has been suffered back to the oven.

Which sometimes, isn’t a bad thing. Take these Peach Lambic Pork Chops for instance. We were able to pull out some of our peach preserves from last summer. So at least dinner can TASTE like summer!

I wish I had more to say but the sun just came out and even though it is only 50° out I put on a jacket, and a glove for my beer hand and try and enjoy some sunshine before it hides behind more clouds…

Crap. Too late.

Peach Lambic Pork Chops

Peach Lambic Pork Chops

  • 4 bone in thick-cut porkchops
  • salt & pepper
  • flour
  • 2 T canola oil
  • 2 T butter
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 2 jalapenos, finely diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, diced
  • 1 12 oz bottle peach lambic
  • 1 cup peach preserves

Preheat oven to 400°.

Salt & pepper the pork chops and dust with flour.

In a large pan over medium/high heat mix butter and oil till butter is melted. Brown the pork chops on both sides. Remove and set aside.

Add in the onions & jalapenos and saute till translucent and golden. Add the garlic and cook an additional 5 minutes. Deglaze the pan with the peach lambic and cook till reduced by ⅓.

Add in 1 cup of peach preserves. Mix well.

Add pork chops back into pan and place in oven. Bake till done, about 20 minutes or until internal temperature of the chops has reached 160 degrees

Plate the chops and bring the sauce to a boil stove top. Boil for 5 minutes till thickened, and pour over chops.

 

p.s. Not pictured, but I just LOVE this with brown rice. The sauce with that nutty goodness is serious manna.

Cooked up by Jeff & Heather ~ Got a comment?