Have your cake & eat it too: bake brownies with stout for a snowy day

Ayuh. It’s Maine and it’s January, so it’s snowing. And that’s just fine. Big white flakes are falling outside my window. Add a nice aroma of baking brownies to that visual image and a fine winter day is shaping up.

I am always starting some new eating plan, and this past month it’s been a Paleo diet. Paleo is also known as the cave man diet and consists of  mostly fruits, vegetables and high quality meats and eggs, usually gluten-free. Here’s a link to one of my favorite Paleo sites: The Spunky Coconut, if you’d like a much more in-depth definition.  http://www.thespunkycoconut.com/

Ingredients gathered

Ingredients gathered

I’m getting ready to promote my new book, due out in May. What’s Brewing in New England (the second, completely new edition) is a guide to brewpubs and craft breweries, but since I love to cook,  I also included as many recipes for food made with beer as my editor would allow.

To celebrate the publication of the book, I’m baking brownies made with stout found at one of my local beer stores, Joka’s in Waterville. Owner Joe Karter told me that his beer business increased 12 % in 2015 and about 80% of that increase was in the craft beer category.

Chocolate brownies made with Two Roads Brewing (CT) stout

Chocolate brownies made with Two Roads Brewing (CT) stout

That explains how a Connecticut beer made its way up to Central Maine and into my hot little hands. Two Roads Brewing Company took over an abandoned mill building in Stratford, Connecticut and in only a few years has been chosen by Yahoo Travel as one of the 50 best breweries in the country. See the article here: https://www.yahoo.com/travel/drink-up-the-50-best-breweries-1312062649417782.html

Stout is one of my favorite styles and only a half cup will go into the brownies, so guess where the rest is going? Right-o.

 

Unorthodox Russian Imperial Stout by Two Roads Brewing

Unorthodox Russian Imperial Stout by Two Roads Brewing

Here is the link to the brownie recipe: note that I have substituted 1/2 c. of stout for 1/2 c. of coffee. I looked forever online for a Paleo brownie recipe with stout and came up with nothing (well there was a bizarre, half-naked woman pouring beer), but I quickly hit the back button. Faith and begorrah!

http://www.thespunkycoconut.com/2013/07/coffee-gluten-free-brownies/

If you would like a conventional recipe, using flour and regular sugar, below is a link for one I found in last month’s Cooking Light Magazine, using less sugar than many recipes.

http://www.cookinglight.com/eating-smart/smart-choices/low-sugar-recipes/chocolate-stout-brownies

This was really easy to put together. I am new at baking with coconut flour and I’m wondering if honey is going to be as satisfying as “the white death,” aka white sugar, but the finished product is on a plate in the kitchen and I’m waiting until I get last night’s episode of Downton Abbey Season 6 on my laptop, snuggle in with a quilt and stuff my face with only one chocolate stout heavenly delight. No one’s here to see if I cheat, though. Cue the sinister laughter.

Oh, and I’ll have nip or two of that Russian Imperial Stout. Cheers!

 

 

 

Kate Cone

About Kate Cone

Kate Cone has a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing, is a freelance writer and the author of "What's Brewing in New England: A Guide to Brewpubs and Microbreweries," published by Downeast Publications in 1997. She is currently updating What's Brewing with a second book about New England craft beer to be published in 2015.