I’m not much of a beer drinker — in fact, 99% of the time, I don’t like beer at all. I shied away from beer completely until I moved to St Louis. When you live in Anheuser Busch territory, you don’t have much of a choice…so I chose Bud Light. Yeah, I know… ew.
Since then, my taste for beer has not grown considerably. With the exception of the rare Corona and some mighty enormous steins of beer I guzzled in Estonia, I just stick with wine. I had no use for beer… until lately.
I already had one recipe in my repertoire that utilized beer, and oh boy, is it good. Then I saw another one — yum yum yum. Then my coworker gave me her own recipe for a beer bread, and well, I’m kind of on board with beer now!
So, without further ado, here are some of best ways I can think to indulge in a brewsky, without actually having to suffer through the awful taste!
Fried Chickpeas with Kale and Sausage, modified from Everybody Likes Sandwiches
This is oh-so-tasty and hearty… perfect comfort food, but something that is new at the same time! I foresee making this often!
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
4 uncooked Italian sausages (original recipe called for 2), cut into pieces
a bottle of beer (original recipe says you can also use wine or water)
1 bunch kale, rinsed with hard stems removed, chopped into bite-sized pieces (original recipe says you can also use chard or spinach)
Saute onions and garlic in olive oil over medium high heat until onions are soft. Add chickpeas and cook for 10 minutes until they start getting brown around the edges, stirring occasionally. Add sausage to pan.
Once sausages are cooked through, add kale. Add some beer a little at a time to keep it from drying out. Stir until kale is bright green and cooked.
Beer Bread, from my coworker Jenn
This bread is so moist, hearty, delicious… and so easy! The crust is a bit sour, but I think if you expect that, you’ll be just fine. You could also experiment with different beers — the one I used was terribly bitter, but maybe something less intense would yield a milder bread.(P.S. It tastes fantastic with pulled pork… yum!)
3 1/4 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup sugar
1 beer, room temperature (I used almost a whole bottle)
Preheat over to 350F and grease a glass bread pan. Mix all dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Pour in a little beer, let the bubbles subside, and gently stir to combime. Do this until the batter is moist; do not overmix. Pour mixture into the bread pan, and bake for 45-55 minutes or until the top and sides of bread are golden.