I have a lot of two things in my house at the moment: leftovers and beer. Naturally, I put the two together to make a stew. I love cooking with beer, and a stew is one of the best ways to incorporate beer into food. This also gave me a chance to open my latest homebrew – a Vienna style ale.
Instead of Turkey, I made BBQ ribs for our annual Christmas feast. I can’t say I am a huge fan of turkey – the only reason why people like turkey is because it is perfectly acceptable to cover it in a ridiculous amount of gravy. I had about two full racks of ribs sitting in my fridge on the verge of spoiling just waiting for a stew.
The stew consisted of bacon, onion, carrot, sweet potato, BBQ pork ribs and Vienna Ale. The starch from the sweet potato was not enough to thicken the stew on its own so I did have to throw in a small amount of all purpose flour. This is my favourite way to cook – using whatever is on hand, toss everything into one pot and let the flavours come together.
The Vienna Ale was also terrific. I used Vienna Malt and 2-Row Barley Malt in equal parts, Cascade and Amarillo Hops, and Nottingham Ale yeast to create my own spin on a Vienna Lager. The beer has a sweet but not overpowering malt flavour coming from the Vienna Malt. The sweet flavour is further supported by the Amarillo hops, which tend to impart a somewhat sweet citrus flavour in young beer. This sweetness will dissipate in one month or two; although, I think Amarillo’s unique flavour tastes great in young beer.
I have no shame in promoting my own food and drink – It was delicious.