Belgian Beer Endives

One of the (many) perks to what we do here is the opportunity to meet some great people. Beer writer and author John Holl is one of those people.

At the end of August we celebrated the release of his newest book, The American Craft Beer Cookbook. It’s comprised of an impressive 155 recipes from brewpubs and breweries across the country, divided by course. Beer pairing suggestions are offered with each recipe, and some of the dishes are made with beer.

The American Craft Beer Cookbook was a huge undertaking, and an excellent resource for any home cook, especially those who love beer. We will definitely be cooking many more recipes from it.

The first one we made was from the appetizers chapter: Belgian Endive with Gruyere and Prosciutto.

From Weyerbacher Brewing Company in Pennsylvania, this recipe calls for Weyerbacher Merry Monks. Since we don’t really do anything with beer these days that doesn’t involve New York, we decided to go with Ommegang Hennepin.

I chose this recipe because of the unique way beer is utilized. The endives are simmered in a beer mixture, then baked with the gruyere and prosciutto.

The result was delicious. The first bite I had tasted just like the smell of brewing beer. It was nutty, crunchy and still retained the crisp and bright flavors of the Hennepin. While many beer cooking recipes use the beverage to complement the food, the endives really took on the flavor of the beer. The salt in the cheese and proscuitto played well with those flavors. Yum.

We paired the Hennepin with the endives, but we also reserved some of it to make our main course of the evening, a beef stew. Stay tuned.

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