Soups / Stews
Soups / Stews

Soups / Stews (3)

How to Make Chili Using Espresso and Giant Slayer Russian Imperial Stout

It is difficult to find solace and inner-peace in the afterglow of the holidays. A day or two after New Year's, one starts thinking about the challenges, new directives, and TPS Reports that lie ahead--it can shake a man loose if he's not careful. So for a final sendoff of the holiday season, I travelled to my Spiritual Advisor's house and set to work on planning a large and decadent pot of chili. I am not and have never claimed to be well-versed in chili. I enjoy eating it a few times a year, namely at out annual chili-themed tailgate in the fall, but I play no real role in the production of the dish at this event. Simply, I am no expert at the stuff.

Potato Leek Soup made with Brewery Vivant's Farmhand Ale

With harvest season now officially passed, it is time to start either canning or using the last round of potatoes, onions, and other subterranean vegetables from the garden. It is no secret that all these kinds of produce are great in soups and other comfort foods. The short, cold days of late autumn can be taxing on a person's disposition, and nothing warms the belly & soul like a rich pot of soup. The world of soup is virtually infinite but one of my favorites, especially this time of year, is potato leek soup. We all know plenty about potatoes but the leek may remain a bit mysterious to some--Allium ampeloprasum is in the same family as onions and garlic but grows in a long sheath rather than a tight bulb like its cousins. Leeks are an extremely hardy plant preferring sandy soil and can grow rather tall. When harvested for use, the long green stalks must be removed and the white cylinder at the bottom should be sliced lengthwise and cleaned thoroughly, as the way it grows allows for a significant amount of dirt and sand to collect there (here is a short video showing how to clean and prep them).

How to make Beer Cheese Soup using Frankenmuth's Batch 69 IPA

I had a strong lust for beer cheese soup recently. There are hundreds of recipes online for it and most of them are boring & bland, calling for watery beer with very little character or flavor. Sifting through some of them, I found a workable one from the Food Network's website and altered it to my taste. Also, since this is a very German-American recipe, I thought it fitting to use one of Frankenmuth Brewery's beers. Any of them would probably taste great, but I had some of their Batch 69 IPA in the fridge, so we set to work with that.