While scrolling through Pinterest one day, I came across a really neat recipe for making your own quick, healthy, popsicles using only two ingredients: fruit and coconut water! No added sugar, …
I believe it was the great Archimedes that famously postulated Beer + Tiramisu = Beeramisu, thenceforth enlightening the masses to the goodness of desserts made with beer. Some historians contend with this belief, arguing that beeramisu was nothing short of divine creation, citing an obscure heretical version of the Bible which reads, “And on the seventh day, He rested… and ate some wicked awesome beeramisu.”
The fact is — the exact origins of beeramisu are unknown and shrouded in mystery. OK, so it probably didn’t derive from some mathematical theorem or antediluvian Biblical verse, but it certainly is no original creation of mine. It was Paul Barbano’s The Bartenders Beer Cookbook that originally turned me onto the idea years ago. Armed with this inspiration, I’ve ventured to make my own on many occasions, tweaking the recipe ever so slightly and testing out different craft beers to find my favorite version.
About two months ago, I was asked to host a beer and dessert pairing for the first-ever LA Beer Week. I was happy to oblige, and I immediately set out to concoct the best damn beeramisu recipe I possibly could. Having experimented with porters and bocks in the past, I wanted to try an even darker beer, perhaps one brewed with coffee beans for extra depth. There it was. The little light bulb in my brain had a flicker of rare genius — AleSmith Speedway Stout. Rich with flavors of roasted chocolate and coffee, it proved an excellent complement to the espresso and cocoa powder called for in my adapted recipe.
As an added bonus, you’ll have a good few glasses of beer to wash it down with. Why not have your cake and drink it too?
Don’t get me wrong — I love butternut squash soup, and soup weather is certainly upon us. But the fact is, butternut squash remains an extremely versatile and greatly typecast gourd. Relatively simple recipes can be just as good as more elaborate preparations, but no matter the difficulty, the slightly sugary and nutty flavor of the squash (not to mention silky texture) lends itself equally well to both savory and sweet experiments.
Butternut squash can be steamed or boiled, but its flavor is best expressed if roasted. Simply split the squash, remove the seeds (don’t toss them! see below*), drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and bake, flesh side down, at 425°F on a baking sheet lined with foil for 35-45 minutes, or until fork tender.
Once the squash is cooked, the possibilities are endless. Creamy Butternut Squash Risotto is an absolute favorite, as is Maple Mashed Butternut Squash. Donalyn Ketchum makes a simply stunning Butternut Squash Gratin, a new recipe I gave a whirl and instantly fell in love with. If your cravings are leaning towards the sweet side of the spectrum, impress your taste buds with a bowl of Ginger Butternut Squash Ice Cream if it’s too cold out for a frozen dessert, perhaps Butternut Squash Panna Cotta could somehow satiate your carnal cravings.
Whatever you end up making, don’t throw away the seeds!