The Cheesecake Addiction

My Life in Food

Archive for the tag “beer”

Beer + Bread 4ever

Hello, dear friends!

Long has it been since I’ve written about the goings on in our kitchen, but upon perusing the interweb I found a recipe this afternoon that immediately made me jump for joy, run to the kitchen, bake, and blog.

Ladies and gentleman, I give to you what is sure to be a Morrell-Dunn-Rankin Family Favorite: Beer Bread.

Yes, yes, you heard right. Your favorite carbs can come together in one gloriously quick hour. AND you only need 5 ingredients!

3 1/2 cups self rising flour, 12oz beer (any kind), 3 TBL sugar, 1 beaten egg, and 3 TBL melted butter.

3 1/2 cups self rising flour, 12oz beer (any kind), 3 TBS sugar, 1 beaten egg, and 3 TBS melted butter.

But, kids, if you’re like me and are without self rising flour, simply ADD: 1 TBS baking powder and 1 tsp of salt. Voila.

Add sugar to flour.

Add sugar to flour.

And then the beer (I used an old Christmas Ale) and the egg.

And then the beer (I used an old Christmas Ale) and the egg.

Mix well, and pop into a loaf pan (or a round cake pan if you are also like me in that you turned your rusty loaf pan into a flour pot this past summer).

Bake a 350 for 50 minutes…

When your hoppy bread comes out of the toasty oven, brush the melted butter on top, and pop back in the oven for 5-10 minutes.

When your hoppy bread comes out of the toasty oven, brush the melted butter on top, and pop back in the oven for 5-10 minutes.

…um…this is the melted butter. Later, for dinner, I added chopped garlic to this and brushed it over NAAN bread.

…um…this is the melted butter. Later, for dinner, I added chopped garlic to this and brushed it over NAAN bread.

When your bread has cooled, lovingly cut yourself a slice.

Mmmmyummy

Mmmmyummy

And if you’re goal in life is to emulate me entirely, you’re going to have to spread nutella on most of your bread-goods (or your Thin Mint cookies).

IMG_1862Nutella on beer bread? Absolutely!

And that’s all she wrote on beer bread. Life goes on as usual over here. CDR and I continue on our health kick (Nutella aside) and I’m happy to report we’ve been doing very well. I believe the current household weight loss count is at slightly over 11 pounds! Woohoo!

Another Nutella highlight from this past month: Banana Nutella Swirl muffins.

 

Don't act like you're not impressed!

Don’t act like you’re not impressed!

And that’s all for now, and I do promise to write soon!

 

 

 

 

 

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Steamers, Beer Flights, and Birthdays

Me, whale watching.

Hello Everyone–

It’s good to be back on thecheesecakeaddiction after a week and a half hiatus. CDR and I had a wonderful time in Woods Hole, we ate delicious food, and kayaked on the ocean. Four days after my return, I’m sipping some tea called Cold Care, nursing a head cold–about 5 minutes ago, I cursed the kettle for it’s high pitched, obnoxious shrill shriek and just ached to return to the Cape. But you’re probably not interested in my head cold. You’re wondering about what I ate this week.

Well, when I landed, first thing was first. I had to have my all-time favorite Cape Cod lunch. The picture was kind of so-so, so I won’t bother with it. But it’s a whole-wheat pita, stuffed with fresh seafood salad and avocado. It’s light, sweet, buttery, and not too unhealthy. This particular seafood salad (from the local market) doesn’t have too much dressing on it, so it’s actually pretty good for you. I LOVE this right before going to the beach. Awesome.

When CDR arrived on Wednesday, I took him to Shucker’s (a local dock-side eatery) for oysters, clams, and fish tacos. Delicious. We also made it to Captain Kidd (where one year earlier I had my first legal sips of alcohol) for a mid-afternoon beer flight and fish and chips.

All delicious. The two on the left (so sorry, can’t remember their names) were my favorite because they were a bit bread-y. And bread-y beers are my favorite.

On Friday, we went whale watching (yay humpbacks!) in Provincetown and got a taste of P-towns finest steamers! Steamed clams in a garlic, white wine and lemon sauce. SO GOOD!! They were slightly gritty, but mostly—they were just delectable. We followed the steamers with a lobster BLT. 

That night, my uncles and dad joined us at the Fish Monger for dinner. I ordered fried calamari for the table. But this was very special calamari. It was served over marinara sauce, but drizzled with a rich balsamic reduction sauce. YUM-O!

One day for lunch, we just opted to stay at home and eat on the deck. CDR made a delicious sandwich (turkey and salami), and we ate it with a heaping helping of Cape Cod Salt and Vinegar chips, which by the way are the BEST chips. Other good flavors: BBQ and Salt and Pepper.

Sunday was my birthday and we went kayaking! So much fun. And so beautiful. That night, we had a pizza party and a chocolate cake with raspberry icing. I couldn’t have imagined a better week. It was perfect.

While I was gone, there was obviously much reflection. This summer has been really hard, and it was really overwhelming to be in this place that I feel so connected to and so much at home. On the coast, with ocean air. I’ve been holding on to a lot, and while I was sitting on the beach a single lyric kept coming back to me.

When everything’s meant to be broken, I just want you to know who I am. (Insert epic instrumental solo)

And maybe that’s why I’ve held on. Just wanting to make sure you know who I am. But also, I realized–I’m okay, if you (or for the majority of the readers–this person) don’t know. This place does.

I love Chicago. It’s great for my career. It’s great for food. I met my best friends here. But I belong in Woods Hole.

I should be by the ocean, sailing, kayaking through rocks and seabirds, walking in nature, cooking seafood, swimming with jellies, and never twenty feet from

…a miracle.

So, I’ll have to get there someday.

 

Recaps, Plans, and Bus Rides

Four. That’s how many Starbuck’s there are in the O’Hare American Airline terminal. Four. Just saying.

I’m writing this from the Peter Pan bus line, on my way to Woods Hole on Cape Cod. The flight passed without much incident, except for the bro-iest take-off ever and the bickering flight attendants. Already, as I settle into the familiar bus seats, I’m feeling a sense of ease wash over me. Going home (or at least one of my homes).

So, there quite a bit of food to recap. Earlier In the week, I made a huge pot of white bean and chicken soup with kale. See the process below. Start with onions, shallots, garlic and celery sautéing over medium-high heat in olive oil and butter. Also, add some fresh thyme and bay leaf to the mix. Salt and pepper as you go along. Add potatoes and the chicken (I let the chicken marinate in salt, pepper, paprika, cumin, and some cream for several hours). Next, to thicken I added about 1/4 cup of flour, stirred it in, and cooked it for a few minutes before deglazing the pan with some white wine. Add a can of crushed tomatoes and enough chicken stock to cover all the vegetables. Cook for about half an hour (until potatoes are cooked through). In the last ten minutes, add the white beans (2 cans) and some kale. Serve with delicious garlic, parm crostini. Yum.

CDR and I also made a home made pizza a few nights ago. We used one of those prepared store-bought crusts (whole wheat, thin crust). I doctored up some jarred red sauce with wine, chili pepper, and garlic. We spread the red sauce on the crust, leaving an acceptable border. Then we topped the red sauce with garlic, green peppers, broccoli (extra broccoli, extra good), and lots of fresh basil. Then came the cheese: mozzarella, Romano, and Parmesan. Sliced white onion, pepperoni, and even more fresh basil on top of that. Bake at 450 for about twelve minutes…and of course, garnish with basil.

For Saturday’s block party–CDR made bratwursts. He simmered them first in beer, peppers, and onions before I tossed them on the grill. We toasted up buns and served with some mustard seed cheddar cheese (find it at Trader Joe’s) and the peppers and onions. Pictures coming.

We also tried a wine called Vinho Verde at the request of thewinegetter. Thanks so much for that rec. It went very well with cheese and crackers. It also had a very nice effervescent quality, which typically I don’t like. But I liked it here…maybe because the wine wasn’t very sweet.

And breathe. There’s the food recap. I want to take a moment now to thank all my readers and followers (whether you’ve been here from day one or are a new follower). This blog has helped keep me sane. And I know that in the grand scheme of things, this summer is but a rough moment…but damn, it’s been a ROUGH. So thanks for coming back. You’re awesome. And please, follow in Mr. Winegetter’s footsteps and offer your culinary suggestions. I’d love to hear your thoughts and favorites.

I have a long bus ride ahead (not quite long enough to do any emotional damage), but with each passing mile, I’m getting closer to some peace of mind and an ocean. Thanks for stopping by.

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Beergaritas and More…

Brace yourselves. I’m about to do it. I’m…I’m about to…quote…

Got a fire in your brain, feel like going insane–and you’re thinking of drinking gasoline

Phew. That wasn’t so bad. It’s just Rent.

Silence is golden, isn’t it?  Except when it SUCKS. Even if you’ve asked for it personally. Still staring at the phone, waiting for the silence to be broken–half dreading, half wanting. However, last night I slept for the first time in five days. The past week has averaged at about 45 min-1hr of sleep each night, and my body was taking a serious hit. But finally–last night, I got a few hours. So, even if I end up sleepless and tossing and turning again, and sobbing to songs like We Are Young and Somewhere Over the Rainbow,  I’ll at least have those few hours. I feel like I’ve regained some amount of sanity. Questions still swirling, though–primarily, “So…dude…what happened on Friday that prompted Facebook antics that put me back several days on the healing journey?” But you know, this isn’t a callout. It’s a blog post. About food!

I seemed to be enjoying myself…

BEERGARITAS. What? Anna, you really have lost your mind, haven’t you? No. Well yes. But no. See, CDR makes a killer margarita. A seriously delicious margarita. And the recipe, which is kind of like an all-purpose mix drink recipe, follows. On Sunday, he had planned to make margaritas for us at Miriam’s house–but we didn’t have any sweetener. CDR thought on his feet and found a honey-beer in the fridge. It was sweet and citrusy enough, so he used it in place of triple sec. The result? Sorry, CDR–not the best you’ve ever made. But it actually wasn’t by any means terrible. Totally passable. And foodies, totes worth a shot. But the all-purpose drink recipe is as follows:

3 parts liquor (tequila), 2 parts mixer (lime juice), and 1 part sweetener (triple sec). If you were making something else, like a Cosmo for instance, it would be vodka, cranberry, and Rose’s lime–respectively.

Yesterday, I went to Trader Joe’s to load the house up with some healthy food to keep me and my taste-buds  happy for a few days. I came across a grain mixture (cous cous, orzo, quinoa, and baby garbanzo beans) and I thought I would make a nice salad for lunch/early dinner (rehearsal schedules have our eating habits all effed up). I followed the directions on the bag and in about ten minutes, the grains were done. Chopped up some basil, parsley, tomatoes, bell pepper, avocado, and tossed in some orange slices. I dressed it with lemon juice, a touch of balsamic, and olive oil. Salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with some shredded cheese (we used cheddar–parm would be great too).

Beautiful!

So, I keep breathing. And keep cooking. I’ll admit, I’m not going to stop staring at my phone for a while–but today, I feel stronger (maybe because I slept).

Listen as your day unfolds, challenge what the future holds. Try and keep your head up to the sky. Lovers they may cause you tears, go ahead–release your fears. Stand up and be counted, don’t be ashamed to cry. You gotta be, you gotta be bad, you gotta be bold, you gotta be wiser. You gotta be hard, you gotta be tough, you gotta be stronger. You gotta be cool, you gotta be calm, you gotta stay together. All I know, all I know…love will save the day.

…I’m glad you came.

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