Food & Beer Matching
Our beer blogger heads over to Anchorage for some food and beer matching. Sheffielders have a genuine food and drink enthusiasm – where there’s delicious food and flavoursome beer people will go and support wholeheartedly. It’s no surprise that when the two are brought together harmoniously there’s an even greater surge of interest. Whether it’s the lure of pizza and beer from the Milestone Group’s newest Kelham Island venture, Craft & Dough or Anchorage’s American East Coast inspired dining. In my humble opinion the national drink, beer, is the finest accompaniment with food. From the variety of beer styles on offer (pale ale, stout, saisons, dunkels or wheat beer) there’ll always be something to match effortlessly to the course you’re having. Don’t even get me started on how dreamily beer and cheese work together – forget port! But that’s for another day. Icons of the beer world, Garrett Oliver and Michael Jackson have written numerous books detailing this perfect marriage. For Michael Jackson in ‘Beer Companion’ he shares, “The bittersweet flavours of black chocolate blend beautifully with those of the right dark brew, but it must be rich and potent to do the trick”. I caught up with Hayley from Anchorage to find what dark brew would marry with their classic, rich, gooey, chocolate brownie (available on the newly launched menu this month). As you walk into Anchorage to the right snakes the bar, a gaze upwards hangs the wooden beer board beckoning you with the temptation of beery treats. There’s a hefty array of draught and bottled beers to choose from, and the choice is impressive. But what would you pair with dark, rich, chocolate brownies? One that jumped out as a potential complimentary match was Wild Beer Co’s Yankee Sandwich. This Somerset brewery seems to repeatedly deliver on experimental flavour combinations and this take on a milk stout with peanut butter reaffirmed their beer wizardry status. Alongside the brownies the dark malts in the milk stout accentuated the roasted and bitter flavours. A mutually rich chocolate profile comes to the fore from the use of cocoa. Oats and lactose add a big creamy body to the beer with a subtle nut and brittle almond quality peeking through from the added peanuts. The peanut butter mousse adding the final uniting element; bringing the dark chocolate brownie and Yankee Sandwich pleasingly together. We’ve managed to prise the recipe from Anchorage’s head chef; fancy baking a batch of chocolate goodies yourself? Anchorage brownie Ingredients: 750g sugar, 625g butter, 565g dark chocolate, 10 whole eggs, 180g flour and 190g cocoa. Method: Whisk eggs and sugar together and set aside. Melt all the chocolate and butter in a heatproof dish over a pan of simmering water. While chocolate and butter is melting, mix together the flour and cocoa. When chocolate has melted, mix into egg mixture and then fold in the flour and cocoa mixture. Line a deep baking tray with greaseproof paper and pour in a thick layer of the mixture. Bake at 160 degrees for 25 minutes. The end product will have a fairly firm layer on top but will still be a bit wobbly. Chill and portion (12) Peanut butter mousse (To serve on top of the brownie) Ingredients: 300g double cream, 100g smooth peanut butter, 50g egg whites, 50g sugar, 50ml aqua vino (tap water) Method: Whisk the double cream to a soft peak. Place water and sugar into a pan and place on the stove to boil, until it is a thick, clear syrup. Into a small pan add the peanut butter and gently heat till more pliable; then fold into the cream. While the sugar is reducing to a syrup, whisk up the egg whites until you can form peaks with it. At this point your sugar should have reduced to a syrup and will be ready to pour directly into the egg whites. Continue whisking while very slowly pouring in the sugar syrup. Once all the sugar syrup has been added to the egg whites you should have a thick, light mixture.