St. Patrick's Day is this Thursday and I've been thinking up a menu to celebrate the day. There's nothing wrong with that old Irish-American standby, corned beef and cabbage, but if you want to try something a little different, I've created a menu based upon the unique taste of Guinness Stout.
Did you know, Guinness Stout was originally marketed as a "health drink?" It was believed that it was high in iron, and for that reason was actually marketed to pregnant women and nursing mothers. More recently, one study reported on supposed antioxidants in stout. I wouldn't bet for a second on those claims, but I will guarantee that you'll enjoy the deep and earthy flavor Guinness Stout lends to my St. Patrick's Day menu. And feel free to wash it all down with some more.
Happy St. Patrick's Day! Slainte!
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Guinness Beef Stew
This hearty beef stew is made more sophisticated and more Irish with a cup of Guinness. The recipe is adapted from the "Irish Beef Stew Recipe" at SimplyRecipes.com.
1/4 cup oil
1 1/4 pounds well-marbled chuck beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch pieces
6 large garlic cloves, minced
6 cups beef stock or canned beef broth
1 cup of Guinness stout
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
2 bay leaves
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
3 pounds potatoes, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 7 cups)
1 large onion, chopped
2 cups carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1. Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Lightly salt the beef pieces. Working in batches if necessary, brown the beef on both sides.
2. Add garlic and sauté 1 minute. Add beef stock, Guinness, tomato paste, sugar, thyme, Worcestershire sauce and bay leaves. Stir to combine. Bring mixture to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, then cover and simmer 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
3. While the meat and stock is simmering, melt butter in another large pot over medium heat. Add potatoes, onion and carrots. Sauté vegetables until golden, about 20 minutes. Set aside until the beef stew has simmered for one hour.
4. Add vegetables to beef stew. Simmer uncovered until vegetables and beef are very tender, about 40 minutes. Discard bay leaves. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with parsley and serve.
Serves 4 to 6.
Chocolate Guinness Cake
This is an out of this world delicious, fudgy and moist chocolate cake, with an earthiness added by the Guinness. It's adapted from a recipe by the fabulous Nigella Lawson in Feast(Hyperion, 2004). I baked it in a Bundt pan instead of the springform pan she calls for, to make it fancier, and I dusted it with powdered sugar instead of the cream cheese frosting she recommends, to make it healthier (sort of). It's to die for.
1 cup Guinness Stout
1 stick plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
Optional: confectioner's sugar, Guinness stout ice cream (below)
1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. Butter and flour a Bundt pan.
3. Pour the Guinness into a saucepan, add the butter, and heat over low heat until the butter has melted.
4. Whisk the cocoa and sugar into the Guinness-butter mixture.
5. Beat the sour cream, eggs, and vanilla together.
6. Add the sour cream mixture to the pot and mix well.
7. Whisk in the flour and baking soda.
8. Pour contents into your prepared baking pan and bake until done, 45 minutes to 1 hour.
9. Garnish with confectioner's sugar, if desired. Even better served a la mode with Guinness stout ice cream.
Guinness Stout Ice Cream
I know you are thinking, beer in ice cream? I had the same thought when I first tried this in Jamaica. But try this recipe and you'll be sold on its slightly caramelly and creamy flavor. Adapted from ''Sunday Suppers at Lucques, " in The Boston Globe, January 18, 2006 .
Makes 1 quart.
1 cup whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
2/3 cup Guinness stout
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons molasses
4 egg yolks
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. In a medium saucepan, bring the milk and cream to a boil over medium heat, then take off heat.
2. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan over medium-high heat, whisk together the stout and molasses. Bring to a boil and turn off heat.
3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the yolks, sugar, and vanilla extract. Whisk in a few tablespoons of the hot cream mixture, then slowly whisk in another 1/4 cup of the cream. Add the remaining cream in a steady stream, whisking constantly. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan.
4. Stir the beer mixture into the cream mixture. Cook the custard over medium heat, stirring often with a wooden spoon, for 6 to 8 minutes or until the custard thickens enough to coat the back of the spoon.
5. Strain the mixture into a bowl and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
6. Process the custard in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions.
7. Serve and enjoy.
© 2011 Linda Shiue