Crisp, cool autumn days make for perfect weather to drink a beer! On National Drink a Beer Day, on September 28, celebrate by sipping on your favorite, local beer paired with fresh herbs. We’ve gathered six herbs that can be incorporated into a dish or sprinkled into your beer.
Cilantro + Bell’s Two Hearted
Bell’s Two Hearted Ale, named after the Two Hearted River in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, is an IPA full of bright, citrus flavors. A beer that is versatile for both the summer and winter months, it combines a strong flavor of hops with a notable citrus taste.
Pair the Two-Hearted Ale with cilantro, which features a spicy, crisp flavor. Cilantro grows well indoors when placed near a bright window. Harvest leaves regularly from portions of the plant that are at least three to four inches tall.
While you can certainly add cilantro directly to your beer, another option is to create a savory dish with Kraft’s Cilantro BBQ Grilled Pork Chops.
- ½ cup Kraft Honey Spiced Pork Chop Barbecue Sauce
- ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped
- ½ teaspoon zest and 2 tablespoons juice from 1 orange
- 4 bone-in pork chops, approximately ½ inch thick
Get your grill ready! Heat to medium high heat. Mix all ingredients together, except for the pork chops. Reserve half for serving with the cooked chops. Grill pork chops for approximately 5 to 7 minutes or until done, while brushing occasionally with the sauce. Remove from grill and cover. Let stand for 3 minutes. Serve with remaining sauce.
Lavender + Founder’s Rubaeus
According to Founder’s, Rubaeus is their way of “celebrating the joys of summer year-round.” With a focus on a strong tart flavor, Rubaeus is a raspberry ale with a unique taste.
Lavender is the perfect pairing with Rubaeus, as it brings out the floral accents within this beer. Simply place a sprig of lavender within this beer and enjoy!
Mint + Founder’s Breakfast Stout
The perfect beer to wake you up-Founder’s Breakfast Stout is a harmonious blend of oats, chocolate and coffee. It’s the perfect beer to warm you up during the cool autumn months.
A growing trend among coffee drinkers is to place mint leaves in their drinks. We’ve decided to take that idea and pair mint with the Breakfast Stout. Mint is an avid grower and should be placed in a container by itself. It requires proper drainage, some shade and frequent harvesting to thrive indoors.
Basil + Dark Horse One Oatmeal Stout
Dark Horse labels this as a “full bodied” beer that is made to help “ease you through the cold and grey Midwestern winters.” One Oatmeal Stout features strong coffee and chocolate flavors.
Of course, you can slightly mince basil leaves and mix into this beer. But what pairs better with a dark beer than chocolate cake? Enjoy this Basil Chocolate Cake, courtesy of PBS, while enjoying Dark Horse’s One Oatmeal Stout.
- 8 ounces dark bittersweet chocolate
- ¾ cup unsalted butter
- 1 cup finely minced fresh basil
- 4 eggs, separated
- ½ cup and 1 tablespoon cane sugar
- 1 cup ground almonds
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Confectioner’s sugar and fresh basil leaves for garnish
Heat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease an 8-inch cake pan and lightly dust with flour. Gently heat the chocolate and butter in a double boiler, just until melted. Remove from heat and stir in the minced basil. Mix well and allow to cool slightly. In a large bowl, beat the 4 egg yolks with ½ cup of sugar, until dissolved. Whisk into melted chocolate until incorporated. Whisk together the ground almonds, cornstarch, and salt. Incorporate into chocolate mixture, mixing well.
Beat the 4 egg whites with 1 tablespoon sugar. Gently and gradually fold into chocolate mixture. Mix delicately so the whites don’t lose their spring and until they are fully incorporated. Immediately pour into prepared pan and bake for approximately 35 minutes. Cool the cake in the pan for approximately 10 minutes. Remove and place on a wire rack. To garnish, lightly dust with confectioner’s sugar and tog with a few sprigs of fresh basil.
Rosemary + Griffin Claw’s Screaming Pumpkin Ale
Griffin Claw’s Screaming Pumpkin Ale-the perfect blend of “cinnamon, clove, sweet pumpkin, and a little molasses.” It’s the perfect Halloween beer.
Snap off a sprig of rosemary from your herb garden and place directly into this drink or pair with this delicious Rosemary & Thyme Roasted Pumpkin dish, courtesy of Feeding Big.
- 4 cups fresh pumpkin cubed, into approximately 1 inch pieces
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary
- ½ teaspoon thyme dried
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Cover a cookie sheet with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, stir the cut pumpkin with the olive oil and spices. Pour the pumpkin onto the covered cookie sheet in one layer. Bake for approximately 45 minutes or until the pumpkin is soft.