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Beer Pairing Fun: Your Guide To Pairing Craft Beer With Your Meals

Posted by on Mar 18, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Beer Pairing Fun: Your Guide To Pairing Craft Beer With Your Meals

Pairing wine with food is an art form to many people, but what about pairing craft beer with food? More than $100 billion is spent on beer every year in the United States, and nearly $20 billion of it is spent on craft beer, so why not enjoy it to its fullest? Get the most out of your beer by pairing it with foods that will enhance the flavor of both your beer and your meal. Grains Just like wine, different types of craft beer pair well with different types of foods. Once you learn which types of craft beer and food go together, you can have fun experimenting with your meals. Clean and crisp beers such as amber lager and Bohemian-style beers go well with grains. These are perfect for washing down wild rice or a cream risotto. The clean and crisp flavors will remain light on your palate while balancing the grain and hops on your tongue. Shellfish If you’re going out for shellfish, ask for a fruity or spicy beer. Try a German-style Hefeweizen or a Belgian-Style Saison. These beers will bring out the natural sweetness and the saltiness in the shellfish while simultaneously cleansing your palate. They’re also sensational with crab, lobster, clams, and scallops. Meats & Roots Rich meats and root vegetables are probably foods that you eat on a regular basis. It can be something as simple as steak and potatoes or as elegant as lamb and parsnips. Both meals pair well with the same types of beer. For these meals, you will want to drink something tart and funky, such as Belgian-style Flanders or an American Brett. The beer will add earthy notes to the food that rest on the center of your palate and make your already delicious meal taste even better. Game Birds & Grains Game birds and specialty grains pair well with different beers than the common grains such as wild rice. For food such as duck and quail with a side of farro or quinoa, you will want to drink a bitter beer or something with a strong hops flavor. These include American Pale Ale and American Brown Ale. These beers complement the gamey flavor, and the fat from game birds will neutralize hoppy flavor of the beer. Pork Pork is a type of food that can go with many different types of beer. Pork is fatty and salty with a bit of sweetness, and these many flavors go with bitter and hoppy beer or fruity and sweet beer. You can try an Imperial India Pale Ale or a Belgian-Style Dubbel and see which you like best. You might want to try something hoppy with a sausage but fruity with a tenderloin. The intensity in the pork saltiness and fat will pair well with the characteristics of a strong beer. Braised Meat & Chocolate Braised meats and chocolate are both strong and creamy, and they both go well with the same types of beer. These include malty and sweet beer like a German-Style bock or a dark and roasty beer such as Baltic-style porter. Some delicious meals to try with these beers would be braised short ribs with chocolate bread pudding for dessert. Desserts Many beers go well with other dessert foods as well. Creamy desserts such as...

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How To Buy, Store And Cook Alaskan Spot Prawns

Posted by on Dec 9, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How To Buy, Store And Cook Alaskan Spot Prawns

Alaska is known for its delicious seafood that ranges from King Crab to flavorful spot prawns. For those not in the know, spot prawns is another name for shrimp, but spot prawns aren’t your ordinary shrimp – although, they are sometimes referred to as spot shrimp. These amazing shrimp (Pandalus platyceros) can reach sizes of up to 12 inches and are only found in the waters up the California coast to the Alaskan Aleutian Islands and in the Korean Strait and the Sea of Japan. They are prized for their exceptional, sweet flavor and texture similar to lobster. What do spot prawns look like? Spot prawns look similar to other types of shrimp. Their shell is a translucent tan or russet color when they are alive and turns bright pink or red when they are cooked. Spot prawns have horizontal white bars on the carapace. Their first and fifth abdominal segment also has characteristic white spots. The underside of their slender bodies has five sets of swimmerets. How can you tell if spot prawn are fresh? Spot prawns contain a chemical in the head that spreads to the rest of the body when it dies. This chemical causes the flesh to become soft and dark spots to appear on the outside of the prawn. While it is best to buy live prawns, if that is not an option, check to be sure that flesh is firm and has not begun to soften. Fresh prawns are typically sold with the head removed, while live prawns have the head intact. In addition, fresh prawns should smell of the ocean and have no hint of ammonia odor. The scent of ammonia is a sign that the prawns are past their prime. How do you store prawns? Prawns should be cooked as soon as possible after purchase, but if you must keep them fresh for a few hours, place them in a cooler on ice. Do not rinse the prawns in tap water as the chlorine in the water will kill the prawn quickly and its flesh will begin to deteriorate. If you wish to store fresh prawns for a longer time, remove their heads and clean them before storing them in the fridge on ice. How do you cook spot prawn? Like other seafood, it is best to cook spot prawn live as this retains the best flavor and texture. Cooking them quickly is also important. Place the prawn in boiling water and watch for the shells to change color. A bright pink or red shell is an indication that the prawns are cooked. It may take anywhere from 30 seconds to 2 minutes to cook the prawns, depending on the number of prawns you are cooking at once. How do you eat spot prawns? Spot prawns can be boiled, roasted, deep fried or stir fried and uses in seafood recipes calling for shrimp. While many prefer to eat them similar to lobster with seasoned, melted butter, there is no right way to eat prawns. Try them in your favorite seafood recipes to add a boost of Alaskan seafood flavor. How do you store leftover prawns? According to Still Tasty, leftover cooked shrimp can be stored in the refrigerator safely for 3 to 4 days. Place them in a shallow dish and...

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Drink, Be Merry And Healthy: 5 Health Benefits Of Craft Beer

Posted by on Sep 18, 2014 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Drink, Be Merry And Healthy: 5 Health Benefits Of Craft Beer

In the United States, there are now more than 2,500 breweries producing a diverse range of products. The United States now has the most operating breweries since Prohibition, and the numbers continue to rise. Despite the social nature of beer drinking, some people still believe that this popular drink is entirely unhealthy, but the facts may surprise you. Learn more about five of the health benefits that your next glass of beer could offer. Fights cancer Antioxidants are essential food compounds that help your body neutralize chemicals called free radicals. Scientists believe that free radicals can cause serious medical problems, including heart disease, liver disease and cancer. Foods and drinks that are high in antioxidants can help the body prevent these conditions. Research published in the Journal of Agricultural Food and Chemistry shows that the hops used in beer contain prenylated flavonoids, which are a better source of antioxidants than red wine or green tea. One flavonoid (xanthohumol) is six times more effective than the antioxidants you can find in citrus fruits.  Lowers the risk of kidney stones A study in Finland found that men who drank beer on a daily basis were 40% less likely to develop painful kidney stones. Kidney stones can travel into the ureters, where they can block the flow of urine and cause extreme pain. Researchers have not concluded why beer can prevent the problem, although the water and alcohol content dilutes urine, which may help prevent the stones forming. Compounds in beer also stop the bones releasing calcium, which may slow down stone formation. Strengthens bones You’ll find many vitamins and minerals in craft beer, but the volumes of calcium and silicon in these drinks are particularly high. The calcium in craft beer generally comes from chalk or gypsum, which the makers add during the brewing process. Calcium and silicon help build strong bones, teeth, hair and nails. If you want craft beers with the highest possible calcium content, look for a brew that uses a lot of barley and hops, such as pale ale. A half pint of craft beer could contain one-third of the suggested daily intake of soluble silica.  Improves heart health A study conducted by Italian researchers found that moderate consumption of beer decreases the risk of heart disease by 31 percent. The study involved 200,000 participants, and compared the health risks of non-drinkers against those of people who consumed a moderate amount of beer daily. Researchers had believed that only wine consumption could prevent heart disease, but they now believe that wine and beer have similar benefits. Interestingly, the study concluded that people experienced no cardiovascular health benefits from drinking spirits. The study recommended beer with a 5 percent alcohol level. Strengthens the immune system Iron is an essential mineral that carries out several important roles in the body. Iron metabolizes proteins, produces healthy red blood cells, fights fatigue and strengthens the immune system. Cereals and leafy green vegetables are high in iron, and some dark craft beers also contain higher quantities of this life-saving mineral. The Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture found that craft beer is higher in polyphenols than other alcoholic drinks. These polyphenols come from hops, and can also help the body kill viruses and fight infection. Beer drinking is an extremely popular...

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