Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Going green with grain and summer cider!

Following a recipe from the latest issue of Zymurgy, last night I made some delicious no-knead pizza dough that included--you guessed it--the spent grains that were leftover after collecting the runoff of my last batch of beer (this time just Franco Belges Pilsener malt and a little flaked wheat.  The awesome thing about this pizza dough is that it makes a double batch and can be used to make cinnamon rolls.  I let that baby get a nice long rise overnight last night, and when I woke up this morning I had a beautiful mound of soft dough with the wonderful texture and flavor of brewer's malts.  I rolled it out on a floured surface, added some butter, cinnamon, sugar and stuff, rolled it into a log and sliced it up to bake in the oven.  The other kicker on this recipe is that it has a stout glaze that goes with it, that basically involves reducing stout (I used my own), brown sugar, and butter on the stove until you get a syrup-like consistency.  The result of both efforts was DELICIOUS.  The cinnamon rolls were light and fluffy, with a flaky outside and amazing flavor.  The glaze was out of this world...basically tasted like pralines and went amazingly with the cinnamon rolls.  All in all, it was an easy project that made a great recycled use of something that I would otherwise throw out, and the taste was incredible.  Definitely something that I'll do again.  SOON.  Also probably gonna make a pizza out of the rest of the dough tonight!  Homebrewers, if you subscribe to Zymurgy, definitely give this recipe a shot.  You will not be disappointed.

Beautiful, golden cider
 I also got another batch of my "famous" cider going, since it was so easy and satisfying the first time and should be a great thing to have around for summer.  I went with the same yeast, Fermentis S-04 (a Whitbread ale yeast), which fared me very well last time.  To do a somewhat controlled experiment, though, I decided to vary the juice this time, using Lucky Leaf instead of Mott's.  To be honest, just tasting the unfermented juice, I already liked Lucky Leaf better than Mott's as it has a little more tartness to it and in my opinion a little more complex flavor (probably because it's not totally made from concentrate).  Seeing as my last cider experiment was pretty derpy and still came out great, I am excited to get this one going.  It should be excellent and, as I mentioned, great for the summer months.

1 comment:

  1. As a pizza, I recommend thinly sliced brussel sprouts, blue cheese, mozzarella, and caramelized onions on a simple red sauce (blitzed canned or fresh tomatoes, maybe some salt). It is addictive. It goes well with California Zin (which is a wine, I realize. I'll leave the beer pairing to the expert).