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I’m just gonna say it, beer is totally neglected in the dessert world. Wine and spirits seem to have all the fun when it comes to dessert pairings and ingredients. Why don’t we show beer any love?!? I set out this past week to make a few beer infused desserts to convince people to consider beer as an ingredient in and pairing with desserts!
Lager Lime Cheesecake
When I was telling people about my idea for this recipe, I got some mixed reactions. Beer? In Cheesecake? Yes, beer in cheesecake. And it was amazing. I was inspired by the lime flavor in the beer to give this the flavor profile of a key lime pie, so that’s where the graham cracker crust came from. The cheesecake had the best texture of any cheesecake I have ever made, and I am wondering if the carbonation from the beer had anything to do with it.
Cheesecakes are really easy to make, just toss everything into the food processor and blend until smooth.
Bake the cheesecake at 350 for an hour and then let it sit in the oven for a bit after that. This cheesecake is so creamy with the perfect amount of tang and sweetness.
You can really taste the beer!
You could serve this with some whipped cream, but I don’t think it needs anything.
Pairing notes: Lagers work with zesty and citrus flavors. An Island or Mexican-style Lager like Bud Light Lime has a great balance of fruity sweetness and zesty notes which will uplift the lemony and citrus flavors in the dessert with a great cleansing effect to counterbalance the sweetness of this dessert.
Chocolate Stout Pretzel Donuts
These donuts are really fun because they combine beer and pretzels, which are the most classic bar snack. Stout beers have become more and more sweet and are often even made to mimic desserts. One of the times I tested this recipe I even used a donut stout! These donuts came out great and are the exact type of donut that would be served at one of those new high end donut shops popping up all over the place.
The donut dough rises and then you cut out those classic donut shapes. Fry them for about a minute per side.
The chocolate topping is just chocolate, cream, and butter, warmed in the microwave. Then just sprinkle on the pretzels.
These have a super soft and doughy inside, but have those deep stout and chocolate flavors. The salt from the pretzels really makes the chocolate pop!
Pairing Notes: Richer, dark bitter chocolate or coffee flavored desserts go with the deeper, warming flavors of an Imperial Stout like Goose Island’s The “Muddy,” which has a soft roasted bitterness and creamy sweetness with hints of vanilla.
I hope I have convinced you to consider beer in your desserts as the holiday season approaches!
Lime Lager Cheesecake
- 2 sleeves graham crackers
- 1 stick butter
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 24 ounces cream cheese
- 1 cup Lime Lager
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup sugar
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Mix the graham cracker, butter, and sugar in a food processor until crumbled and fully mixed.
- Clean out the food processor and add the cream cheese, beer, lime juice, eggs, and sugar. Blend the filling ingredients until fully mixed and smooth.
- Grease a 9 inch springform pan and line with parchment paper. Pour the graham cracker mixture into the pan and press into the bottom and sides of the pan. Bake for 10 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and pour the filling into the pan. Bake for 1 hour. Kill the heat on the oven and open the oven for 5 minutes. Close the oven with the cheesecake in it for 30 minutes.
- Pull the cheesecake and allow it to rest on the counter until fully cooled. Remove the cheesecake from the springform pan. Slice and serve.
Pretzel Stout Donuts
- 3 cups flour
- 1 cup cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup warm stout
- 1/2 cup stout
- 1 package yeast
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 6 tablespoons sutter softened
- 4 eggs
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 cup chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup cream
- 1 tablespoon butter
- crushed pretzels
- Mix the warm beer with the yeast and allow to sit for 15 minutes until frothy. Meanwhile, whisk together the butter, eggs, yolks, and beer. whisk that into the yeast and beer mixture. Then add in the flour, cocoa powder, and salt. Knead for about 10 minutes until well mixed. Dough should be a little wet and sticky but hold a firm shape. Place in a greased bowl. Cover and let rise for an hour.
- Roll out the dough into a half inch thick sheet. Cut out donut shapes with cookie cutters. Place the donuts onto a baking sheet and allow to rise another 30 minutes.
- Bring oil to 350 in a dutch oven or thick frying pan. Fry the donuts in batches of 2 or 3 for 1 minute per side. Remove from oil and place on a drying rack.
- Mix the chocolate butter and cream in a bowl and microwave for 15 seconds. Stir and repeat until you have a smooth sauce. Make sure to stir for awhile each time to give the chocolate a chance to fully melt.
- Frost the tops of each donut with the ganache. Then sprinkle on the pretzel pieces. Best served immediately, but are still really good for about 24 hours.