Pump(kin) Up Your Beer!

Fall is not only in the air, it’s in your beer. As harvests continue and bloom into full hay wagons full of squash and produce, look for pumpkin beers to try.

Pumpkin beers vary widely - try several

Pumpkin beers vary widely – try several

Having done a pumpkin beer sampling at an event last fall, I can tell you that they are widely different in their flavors, sweetness and dryness. Some will smell and taste like pumpkin pie spice. Some will have lovely subtle flavors, some will be sweeter. So depending on what you’re after, try a few until you find one you enjoy.

If it’s a sweeter pumpkin beer you’ll find in it a delicious opportunity to use in a cobbler, pie, crock pot roast, or in a dressing. If the mouthfeel (aka texture) is drier, those pair nicely with salmon and sweetly savory foods.

Pick a pack of pumpkin beers this fall. Gather some friends round the bon fire and celebrate your home and life. All’s well, that fall’s well!

Till the next glass –

g

Try this: Pumpkin beers are in full bloom! Seek them out and enjoy them in your glass as well as in recipes. Elysian helped pioneer the modern pumpkin beer with Night Owl and lots of brands have joined the patch. NOTE: pumpkin beers vary widely – I’d encourage you to try a few (at least!).

This article originally ran on 9.17.13 for Your Home By Karie Engels

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Beer Smoothies & Summer Drinks

You heard me right. Beer in smoothies can be just the ticket for a refreshing summer drink. Why let the spirits mixologists have all the fun!?

Molly, KTVL & Ginger on air talking up Beer Smoothies

Molly, KTVL & Ginger on air talking up Beer Smoothies

Here are a few ideas and pointers in using beer in smoothies.

1. Like any smoothie, work together with complementary flavors. Use hearty chocolately stouts in ice cream based smoothies and shakes. Adding malted milk powder will enhance the body and echo the malty flavor contribution of the beer.

2. Add modest amounts of beer. A little goes a long way, so start with smaller quantities (a few tablespoons) and build as desired.

3. To avoid over-foaming, use ingredients that are in the same temperature range. Drastic differences between beers, the container you’re mixing in and other ingredients will cause some assertive carbonation release.

4. Do beer tastings in advance to find out what flavors in which beers stand out would serve you well in your smoothie and beer drinks adventures. Does it have a grapefruity crispness? Then use fresh citrus. Does it have a moderate malty sweetness? Then try lush fruits and vegetables with low acid attributes.

If you’ve never tried a beer smoothie, now’s the time. Having made both beer floats and beer malted milkshakes before, I can tell you it’s a fun and unexpected experience. Go on, get your smoothie on!

Go Here: Visit your local beer store and talk to the crew to help you pick out a few flavors of beer you wish to try.

Try This: Beer floats are classic: rich stouts with a scoop of coffee, chocolate, or vanilla ice cream are waiting. Deep stone fruit porters beg for a scoop of raspberry sorbets. Pour a grapefruity IPA over a dollop of lemon gelato.

This article originally appeared on Your Home with Karie Engels, where Ginger is her regular Beer Contributor. The article was inspired by Ginger’s time with Reporter Molly Trotter/KTVL talking about Smoothies

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