The holidays are almost upon us. Ready or not, here they come! You may find yourself searching for a new recipe to liven up your table. Look no further than your local Michigan craft beverage purveyor for inspiration and try cooking some of your holiday favorites with beer!
Beer already fills the role of football viewing companion, but we think it’s time it takes center stage as well! Below are (two) recipes recommended by Short’s Brewing Company Head Beer Liberator, Jon “Woj” Wojtowicz. With his extensive background in Short’s Deli and his vast array of knowledge with regards to beer and food pairings, Woj has tweaked some classic holiday recipes (a cranberry dish and gravy) to include some of our favorite libations. We also have a tried and true turkey brine recipe from our Detroit area Liberator, Brian Talpos.
Soft Parade Relish
- 1 orange
- 6 oz Soft Parade
- 2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries (about 8 ounces)
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup chopped walnut pieces
Finely grate the zest of half of one orange into a medium saucepan, then squeeze half of the orange and add the juice from that, along with 6 oz’s of Soft Parade. Add 2 cups of frozen cranberries (8 oz), ¾ cup of sugar, and ¼ cup chopped walnuts. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the mixture thickens and the cranberries start to pop – this should take approximately 15 – 20 minutes. Let cool and serve.
Good Humans Turkey Gravy
Yields 8 cups of gravy
- 1/2 cup turkey fat (use the oil that separates from your turkey drippings in your roasting pan)
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 6 cups chicken broth
- 2 cups Good Humans: Dry Hopped Double Brown Ale
- 1 Bay Leaf
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- 1 small sliced onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 2 tablespoons cold smoked butter (available at Boss Mouse Creamery for our Northern Michigan readers)
Simmer 6 cups of chicken broth and 2 cups of Good Humans with the sliced onion, garlic, bay leaf, thyme, and parsley for 1 hour. Cook the flour with the fat and 1 tablespoon smoked butter to make a roux for thickening the gravy.
Gradually add the hot broth (strain first if desired to remove the onion and herbs) to the roux, whisking constantly to prevent lumps. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium low.
Simmer, whisking occasionally, until the gravy thickens, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in the remaining tablespoon smoked butter.
Bellaire Brown Turkey Brine
- olive oil
- 6 yellow onions, chopped
- 4 carrots, sliced about 1 in.
- 14 garlic cloves, smashed
- 1 leek, diced
- 3 celery, sliced about 1 in.
- 3 tangerines, juiced and with the rinds saved and cut into quarters
- 1/2 grapefruit, juiced and with the rind saved and cut into wedges
- 10 bay leaves, dried and crumbled
- 4 sprigs of thyme, fresh
- 2 sprigs sage, fresh
- 2 sprigs rosemary
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1x clove, whole
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup honey
- 2 cups of Kosher Salt
- 1 tbsp peppercorns, whole
- 1 qt water
- 1 small Bag of Ice
- 10 bottles of Bellaire Brown
Using the olive oil, sauté the onions & leeks over medium heat in a large pot until soft. Add the carrots, celery, and bay leaves and continue to sauté and stir until the onions are browned (not burnt!). Gradually stir in garlic and brown sugar until sugar is dissolved. Add the the rosemary, thyme, and sage sprigs
Deglaze the pan with the juice of the tangerines and grapefruit stirring vigorously to dislodge any browned bits on the bottom of the pot. Add the fruit rinds to the mix along with 1 qt of water. Bring the mixture to a boil while adding the salt, pepper, honey, cinnamon stick, and clove.
Boil the mixture for approximately 10 minutes. Kill the heat and move the mixture to your brining container (bag, cooler, etc.) Add the small bag of ice to cool mixture. Once the mixture cools to approximately 50F, pour in 10 bottles of Bellaire Brown. Add prepared turkey to mixture and submerge. Keep the bird cold for 24-72 hours (larger the bird, the longer the time needed).
Feeling inspired? We would love to hear about your experiences cooking with our beer! Email your own holiday recipes (using Short’s beer) and photos to [email protected], or post on our facebook page.