Saturday, January 11, 2014

Meyer Lemon Belgian Saison + Meyer Lemon Bars

Another brewing + baking post (I told you we have been brewing lately!).

This time, we made a Meyer Lemon Belgian-style Saison Ale. One of our friends who brews with us brought back a ton of Meyer lemons from his family's home and we decided to brew with them. During the brewing process we only needed the zest of the lemons, as we'll add in some lemon juice when we transfer to the secondary fermenter. So, since we had a bowl full of zested Meyer lemons that would likely dry out and go to waste in the next week or so, we decided to bake some lemon bars while the beer was brewing on the stove. They were a hit and curbed our craving for Meyer lemons while we wait for the beer to finish fermenting.

Meyer Lemon Belgian Saison

1 lb Belgian 2 Row 
1 1/2 lb Wheat
1/2 lb Wheat Flakes

2 oz Styrian Goldings (1 oz at 60 min; 1 oz at 30 min)

5 lbs dry malt extract
Saison ale blend yeast
Zest of 5 Meyer Lemons (added at completion of boil)
Juice of 1 -2 Meyer lemons (about 1/4 cup, added to secondary fermenter)

Meyer Lemon Bars


1/4 cup powdered sugar
3 tablespoons butter, softened
1/2 cup all purpose flour

3 large eggs
1/3 cup agave nectar
2 tsp grated lemon zest
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice 
1 tsp vanilla
3 Tbsp all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
powdered sugar for dusting


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. 

Crust: Beat the powdered sugar and butter on medium speed until creamy. Gradually add the 1/2 cup flour and mix on low until the mixture resembles pea-size crumbs. Press the mixture into the bottom and up sides (about 1/4 to 1/2 inch) of 8 or 9 inch square baking pan and bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes. 

Cool on a wire rack while you make the filling. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees.

Filling: Beat the eggs on medium speed until foamy. Add the remaining ingredients and beat on low until combined. 

Pour the mixture over the crust and bake at 325 until set, about 20 - 25 minutes. Cool on wire rack and dust with powdered sugar before serving.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

S'more Stout + Spent Grain Chocolate Chip Cookies

Happy New Year! After a busy end of 2013, we are officially back with some new posts to kick off 2014. We have been brewing a lot lately and experimenting with baking with the spent grain (the grain that we steep to start the brewing process). This time, I scooped out enough to line a square baking pan and tried to dry out some of the moisture in a 200 degree oven for about 5 hours. We were brewing a chocolate-y stout, so the grain had a great sweetness to it. After getting most of the moisture out, we put it in a food processor to grind it up a bit. I think next time we'll let it stay in the oven a bit longer, but we were pleased with the nutty, earthy flavor that the gain added to the cookies. Here are the recipes for both the cookies and the S'more Stout (inspired by this beer by Highwater Brewing Company).

S'more Stout

1 1/2 lbs Maris Otter
1/2 lbs Roasted Barley
1/4 lbs 
1/4 chocolate
1/4 150L Crystal Malt

2 oz Fuggle (1oz at 60 min; 1oz at 30 min)

6 lbs malt extract 
Nottingham yeast
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup honey
2 cinnamon sticks
3 vanilla beans (2 in boil, whole; 1 in the primary, sliced lengthwise)

About halfway through the boil, we took 2 cups of wort and placed it in a saucepan. To it we added the cocoa, honey, cinnamon and vanilla beans and let simmer for the remaining time. The goal was to create the flavor you get in a s'more- chocolate, honey from the graham crackers, and vanilla in the marshmallow. Before cooling the wort, we added in the cocoa mixture. Once we had transferred to the primary fermenter, we added the third vanilla bean, sliced lengthwise to maximize the flavor. We have about 2 weeks to go until our S'more Stout is ready to drink, and we can't wait!

Spent Grain Chocolate Chip Cookies

We used the recipe from the back of the bag of chocolate chips, with a few minor substitutions. We used 1/2 cup spent grain in place of 1/2 cup of the flour. Because the grain was not completely dry, we did not have a flour consistency, so the result was that the cookies were a little flat. Next time I'll add some baking powder in addition to the baking soda in the recipe to try to get them to rise a bit more. 


2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup ground spent grain
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar 
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups chocolate chips


Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a small bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt and set aside. 

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar. Beat in eggs and vanilla until smooth. Next add in the spent grain, then gradually mix in the flour mixture until all ingredients are combined. Stir in chocolate chips.

Bake on cookie sheet 8-10 minutes, or until golden brown.