Saturday, 2 February 2013

The Dog Days are Over

Why does my beer taste weird?  Kind of like...corn.  Whether you’re a home-brewer or not, there are some key beer defects you should look for.  I’ll share a few of the most common ones over the next few weeks so you know what to look for.  Although none of these chemicals will kill you, you deserve better.  Have a little dignity and look for something else to imbibe.  Life’s too short to drink substandard beer.

X gon' give it to ya...wait, DMS?
Thought you said DMX!

1) A cooked corn or cabbage flavour is cauased by dimethylsulfide, often abbreviated DMS.  More common in ales, it is a sign of a grain infection or improper chilling of the wort.  In darker beers this flavor may also remind you of tomato soup.  The typical flavor threshold is around 35ppb.

2) Does your beer smell or taste of rotten eggs? Or is grandma perming her hair in the kitchen sink again? Volatile sulfur compounds like sulfur dioxide (SO2) and hydrogen sulfide (H2S) are produced in small amounts during mashing, but are usually driven off with a vigorous boil. When the smell of sulfur is overwhelming, this can indicate some serious contamination by the yeast. However, a subtle whiff of sulfur (like a burned match) can be desired by some brewers.  This is a famous trait of many beers brewed in Burton-on-Trent in the United Kingdom.

If your beer tastes like corn, you have a problem.  But if your corndogs taste like beer, I wouldn’t complain.

I’ve waited a long time to try this recipe.  I had great ambitions of conquering my shear terrier of the deep-fryer.  I failed in the latter respect, and used a frying pan with only 2 inches of oil instead.  They didn’t turn out too ruff.

I paws-ed only a moment to make this special ketchup, and holy shih-tzu is it good!  It would give some other tiresome foods a new leash on life.  Burgers, fries, or mac n’ cheese. Unless you’re a mac n’ cheese purist and don’t believe in ketchup.  I respect that.

Enough with the dog puns.  Schnauzer chance to make some corn dogs!

Beer Battered Corn Dogs

The dog days are over.  I won't be making these again for a while.

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup cornmeal
 11/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp granulated sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 pinch cayenne pepper
2 eggs
1/2 cup beer
1/2 cup buttermilk
Vegetable oil, for deep-frying
12 hotdogs, cut in half
Chipotle ketchup, for dipping

  1. In large bowl, combine of the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, sugar, baking soda, salt and cayenne pepper.
  2. In a smaller bowl, combine together eggs, beer and buttermilk; whisk into dry ingredients. Set aside.
  3. Pour enough oil into deep-fryer or Dutch oven to come 2 inches (5 cm) up side. Heat until deep-fryer thermometer registers 375ºF (190ºC).
  4. Meanwhile, in bowl, toss hotdogs in remaining flour until coated. Insert thick wooden skewer two-thirds of the way into each for handle and tap off excess flour.
  5. Pour batter into a tall glass or deep bowl.  Dip hotdogs into batter to coat, adding 1 to 2 tbsp water if too thick.
  6. Gently add hotdogs to oil. Fry in batches until golden brown (about 1-2 min), turning halfway through.  Drain on rack or paper towel to blot oil.

Makes 24 mini corn dogs

Chipotle Ketchup

1 cup ketchup
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tbsp chipotle pureé

  1. Combine ingredients in a small mixing bowl.
  2. Mix vigorously to combine.
  3. Serve with corn dogs or other foods.

Drinking Made Easy. The 10 Most Common Beer Defects.  October 19th, 2012.

Frederick’s Original Ale Makers (FOAM)

Recipe adapted from Canadian Living Magazine, June 2012

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