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Topics - MDixon

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The Pub / Oat Shortage
« on: November 27, 2016, 06:05:31 PM »
Looks like Canadian oats are gonna be in short supply in 2017.

Beer Travel / Denver
« on: September 28, 2016, 12:29:11 PM »
I've been to Denver before, but I'd like to get some suggestions on taprooms/restaurants to not miss. I really don't care about a brewery tour, but like eclectic brewery taprooms or taprooms which should not be missed. On our last trip it was cold and snowy part of the time and it was a whirlwind. This time we have a longer schedule, but Wed night we are at Wynkoop and Thurs at GABF.

We have been to Falling Rock and Hops & Pie and several other joints. I have Freshcraft on my hit list, but what else is a must visit in Denver and the surrounding areas?

Events / Beer Drinker Of The Year Finals - 10/5 - Wynkoop
« on: September 28, 2016, 12:09:30 PM »
Please pass the word along for anyone who will be in Denver next week to come by Wynkoop Wednesday night and witness the spectacle that is the Beer Drinker Of The Year finals.

All Things Food / Hoisin
« on: September 19, 2016, 11:27:05 AM »
We had been making homemade lettuce wraps and one of the ingredients in my wife's recipe was hoisin and when we ran out I went to the interwebs and in a pinch made my hoisin. She likes it better than the jar stuff so I guess from now on we will make it from scratch. Should make about 1/3 cup.

4 TBSP Soy Sauce
2 TBSP Peanut Butter
1 TBSP Honey (or Molasses)
2 Tsp Rice Wine Vinegar
2 Tsp Sesame Oil
1 Tsp Sriracha Hot Sauce
1/8 Tsp Black Pepper
1 Clove Minced Garlic

All Things Food / Peanut Butter
« on: September 19, 2016, 11:21:08 AM »
I remember as a kid we had a place called The Peanut Shack which had a peanut butter machine with a hopper fully of roasted peanuts and it spit out a really chunky and oily peanut butter. It had a great flavor, but was far from perfect. We were running out of peanut butter at home, we don't use much, and so I decided to check into one of those machines. Turns out there are two versions. The home version is awful per reviews and the commercial version was far too expensive. I went to the web and figured out everyone makes it in the food processor and supposedly it was super easy. My next trip to Aldi I picked up a jar of dry roasted nuts for perhaps $2 and this morning I whipped out a batch of peanut butter.

2 cups dry roasted nuts
3/4 tsp salt (to taste)
1 1/2 tbsp honey (to taste)

Pulse processor until nuts are broken into small pieces. If you want chunky peanut butter remove them now and add back at the very end. Once nuts are broken up run continuously for a minute and scrape down as needed. Repeat twice more. Over the time you will see it change from raw nuts to spreadable peanut butter. Now add salt and honey. Run for two more minutes. At the very end you can add back the nut pieces for chunky just enough to incorporate.

I did smooth today and it tasted awesome. I had planned to make chunky, but added the pieces too early and got smooth.

The Pub / Voluntary Disclosure Initiative - AKA Beer Nutrition Labels
« on: July 15, 2016, 10:15:35 PM »
Sounds like a scheme from BMC leading to a negative ad campaign against craft brews to me.

All Things Food / Crock Pot
« on: June 28, 2016, 02:57:03 PM »
Since someone brought it up on another thread, I think the crock pot is an amazing piece of cookware. We actually have four of them. One is on the small side and my grandmother gave it to me when I got my first apartment in college. The next is slightly larger and works well for a meal. The third is oval and can cook large meals. The fourth is a three crock pot serving dish which is great for keeping things warm for awhile.

There is not much better than putting country style ribs in the crock pot with some vinegary barbecue sauce and coming home to have cue ready to eat by simply pulling out the bones and breaking up the meat with a fork.

All Things Food / Pressure Cooker
« on: June 28, 2016, 12:01:03 PM »
I think the last time we had a pressure cooker thread was 2010 so it seemed like a good time to start a new one. We had a Presto PC and I believe the gasket died so we ditched it around 2011. My wife decided she wanted a new one earlier this year and after some research I landed on the Fagor Duo which is an 8 quart and was recommended by America's Test Kitchen.

According to ATK the price should have been $80-90, but all we could find was $110 which seems kinda pricey for a pot. After some searching around we found it on Kohl's website and with some bucks my wife had and a percentage off got it home for around $70. My first cook was beef ribs and wouldn't you know it the lid had a defect. I sent a note to Fagor CS and they shipped out new parts and after install we've not had another issue.

Last night I cooked some pork ribs and my wife loved them. I still prefer a smoker for ribs, but 30 minutes vs hours on the grill is a big difference especially with so little prep to get rolling. We're pulling it out about once a week and have even tried it with frozen meat with great results. The one recipe that didn't quite work was a chicken recipe and apparently even when frozen they meant for the pieces to be separated.

If I were looking for a space saver I would get one of these and use it as a pressure cooker and a stock pot for dual duty.

All Things Food / Sauerkraut Fun
« on: June 14, 2016, 06:58:00 PM »
So I've made kraut in the past and know how to do it and as it turns out I like kraut, a little on a reuben, but a bucket of kraut is enough to last me forever. My wife tried to make some in the kitchen a few years ago and as soon as it started to ferment she threw it out due to the smell of fermentation. While I was gone to Baltimore she decided it was time to make kraut again so she got some lids and airlocks for jars and made two small batches. When I got home she was very proud of herself until I divulged the airlock does not filter out the aromas, it simply keeps things from getting in. I wish I had a video of her reaction.

Anyway, I set her up a dorm fridge on a temp controller in the garage to ferment her kraut, but thought I would share the story.

Events / BJCP Reception in Baltimore
« on: June 02, 2016, 11:13:26 AM »
Seats are still available for the BJCP Reception on Wednesday in Baltimore. You can register here:

The BJCP Reception at the Baltimore AHA conference is June 8 from noon to 3:30pm and that same day from 4 to 6pm is Exam Proctor Training. Registration for both is open now on the BJCP website, enter from the home page and be sure to select the correct event you with to attend. Proctor Training is free and only available for BJCP members, while the BJCP Reception is open to members and guest.

The page opened for me on Proctor Training, so if you were only interested in the Reception be sure to change the selection at the top of the registration page.

Commercial Beer Reviews / Ommegang Seven Kingdoms
« on: April 25, 2016, 04:12:54 PM »
Really enjoyed this beer. They mentioned phenols on the website, but they did not stand out to me. Seemed like a perfect example of a White IPA from the bottle I consumed.

I hope Moonlight Brewing loses and I hope it costs them lots of money in the process.

Ingredients / Cleopatra Hops
« on: April 05, 2016, 01:34:53 PM »
I was at one of my local breweries last night and they had a single hop pale ale on using Cleopatra hops. I tried to find out some information on the hops and really haven't come up with much so I thought I would ask here. The brewer didn't have any real information either, it was a hop his supplier had so he thought he would give it a try. The aroma was fantastic for the pale ale, but the bittering was a bit understated. I could see this hop for aroma in pale ales and IPAs, but didn't know if someone had more experience with them or more information to offer.

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