Pecan Pie and Weyerbacher Blithering Idiot Barley Wine

Caroline: It’s been so cold lately I’ve been really craving some Christmas time foods. I think the reversed seasons is still the weirdest thing about living far from home for me. It’s August and it feels like there should be Christmas music playing and eggnog in the grocery store….

anyway-

I decided to make myself a pecan pie to soothe the homesickness.

Me and Kris recently got a great cookbook aptly called “The Great American Cookbook;” a revised edition of ‘How America Eats’ by Clementine Paddleford. Even the authors name screams Americana right?
It’s a great book that is divided up by states and their regional specialties.

Apparently Pecan Pie is a specialty from Georgia. Here is the recipe:

3 large eggs

2 tbs unsalted melted butter (I used salted, I like a bit of salty contrast in my sweets)

2 tbs all-purpose flour

1/4 tsp vanilla extract

1/8 tsp salt

1 1/2 cups dark corn syrup (I couldn’t find this in Tasmania but you can’t, use Golden syrup, which I did, or molasses in equal measure)

1/2 cup sugar (I did 1/4 c white sugar and 1/4 c brown sugar since golden syrup isn’t as dark a sweetener as I wanted)

8 inch pie crust (store bought or home made)

1 1/2 cups broken up pecans

Preheat oven to 220C or 425F

with electric blender beat eggs.

beat in melted butter, flour, salt, sugar, vanilla, and syrup. Set aside

(make you pie crust or whip out your store bought one)

dump all of the pecan pieces into the pie crust relatively evenly across the bottom

pour the mixture gently over the pecans (I thought this step was sort of weird at first but the pecans actually float up through the syrup to distribute themselves. GENIUS)

bake for 10 minutes

reduce heat to 165C or 325 F and bake for another 40 minutes

if you notice the top starting to brown too quickly you can cover it with foil

I also recommend placing pie tin on a cookie sheet lined with baking paper incase of any spillage

when done the center should be puffed and set but still a little wobbly

(I had to bake mine for an extra 15 minutes)

let cool so it firms up and enjoy! I had mine with a scoop of wattle seed and macadamia iceream.

Kris: What a treat! I’m a lucky man. As I have said it  before, I am not a huge dessert eater, but the pecan pie was hard to resist. I l also had a bottle of Weyerbacher Blithering Idiot Barley Wine in the cupboard that I bought back from the States to enjoy with my slice of pie. It is brewed in Pennsylvania. It’s 11.1% and has a big sweet malt profile with dried fruit and fig flavours and aroma. It complimented  the pecan pie perfectly and was a great treat on a chilly winters day.

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Jean Bonnet Tavern, Pennsylvania

Caroline: After the wedding, Kris and I took a mini honeymoon to Bedford Springs, Pennsylvania. While there, it was recommended we try out the Jean Bonnet Tavern. Boy am I glad we did!

It was only about a ten minute drive from where we were staying.

Kris: Pennsylvania is a truly beautiful place. I am so happy I was able to experience it during summer. Jean Bonnet was a great find too. It was out in the middle of farmland, just outside of the quaint old town of Bedford. Such a great selection of local craft beers, historic buildings and of course some fantastic American food to match with beer.

Caroline: Tons of great beers on tap and lots of local ones, including my favorite of the trip the Troegs Hopback Amber Ale.

Here’s a tidbit about it from their website:

“HopBack Amber Ale derives its name from a vessel in the brewhouse called a hopback. As the ‘wort’ is being transferred from the brewhouse to fermentation it passes through the hopback vessel. Packed full of fresh whole flower hops, the wort slowly circulates through this vessel extracting the essence of the aromatic hops. This vessel adds more time and more hop character that creates a fresh, spicy taste and rich caramel note that defines this signature ale.”

It has the backbone and richness of an Amber ale and all the hoppiness of and IPA that I LOVE

Caroline: Of course, one needs beer snacks to go with beer. Seeing as we were on the buffalo wing tour of the east coast, we had to give Jean Bonnet’s wings a go.

Thank goodness we did! This may be the best (definitely top 3) hot wings I’ve ever had, and I have eaten ALOT of hot wings in my day. They had perfect amount of spice and sauce, the skin was crispy and the meat inside was tender enough to fall right off the bone.

If you are ever in PA seriously go to Jean Bonnet and get these hot wings.

Kris: Definitely some of the best Buffalo Wings I have eaten! The Troegs Hop Back Amber Amber Ale was also a great match to the wings.

Kris: I spotted some Bacon wrapped scallops with BBQ sauce on the menu and had to give them a try. I thought they would be a great match with 1 of the many local beers on tap at Jean Bonnet Tavern. They scallops were perfectly cooked and the sauce was really sweet and smoky, which worked well with the bacon and the scallops. We matched it with Founders Red Rye Pale Ale. The sweet, nutty malt and citrus hop character complimented the scallop dish perfectly.

Caroline: We were slowing down, but thankfully the previous three weeks of training and stretching out our stomachs helped us soldier onto the main course: The French Dip.

wow

soft roll toasted on the inside, melty provolone, shredded beef, and the dipping sauce- OH THE DIPPING SAUCE

juicy and delicious.

Kris: Victory Summer Lovin’ Summer Ale was a lighter style beer to cut through the beef, cheese and jus. One of the tastiest sandwiches I have ever eaten!

Caroline: As you can tell we really suffered through it.

And what a view!

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