Experimenting with Boardwalk Beer Bread

Recently I had the pleasure of whipping up this tasty beer bread courtesy of Boardwalk Food Company.

While I had never heard of this particular company, I thought, anyone offering an easy beer bread mix is certainly worth checking out. Y’all know how much I love a good beer bread after all.

Rosemary Parmesan Beer BreadI chose to try the Rosemary Sea Salt version because I just adore the flavor of rosemary.

Of course I couldn’t simply add beer and bake as the instructions say because I have an inane need to tinker. Take, for example, those frozen Trader Joe’s meals that you’re supposed to just throw in a hot skillet and stir – Goodness no! I just have to add extra veggies, garlic, cheese etc. Velveeta mac ‘n cheese? clearly needs broccoli in it didn’t you know?

That’s just how I role, can never leave well enough alone.

Boardwalk Rosemary Sea Salt Beer Bread + Parmesan

The combination of rosemary and Parmesan is perfection so I added a healthy dose of finely grated parm to the mix, you know, to fulfill my tinker urge.

And because cheese makes everything better, yes?


The beauty of these mixes is that you just a regular 12 oz beer (plus whatever add-ins you feel necessary), and in an hour you have a nice freshly baked loaf of bread.

Boardwalk Beer BreadOne criticism I have of the instructions is that there is no guidance on what type of beer to use for the bread (though their blog does have some fun and interesting beer pairing suggestions). I see this with a lot of recipes that call for beer as an ingredient. In some ways I can see how this might encourage experimentation but it could also result in an unexpected or not so tasty end product. Personally I avoid cooking with beers that have a lot of bittering hops, like most IPAs.

I chose Old Speckled Hen as my beer of choice for this mix because it has a pleasant maltiness without much bitterness. That hint of nutty malt sweetness worked well with the Parmesan and balanced out the rosemary pungency.

Overall the bread had a nice crust on the outside with the perfect combination of soft and chewy inside. Be warned that the rosemary flavor in the bread was pretty strong, rosemary lovers rejoice!


Many thanks to Boardwalk Food Company for letting me try their tasty product! I’d be very curious to try the other varieties, particularly the cornbread version, which I think would be excellent with a big bowl of chili!

If you want to try out these simple and tasty breads, you can head on over to their website and enter the code LoveBeer14 for 25% off! Would be a fun gift basket item – with a six pack of beer in it of course!

Pairing Advice: Blackberry Pie

One of the things that I love about beer and food pairing is that there isn’t just one perfect option for any particular food or beer. You can truly customize your pairing based on what styles you like and what aspect of the food or beer you want to highlight. While all this flexibility makes it easier to pair,  if you’re not familiar with the different flavors of the various beer styles it can seem a daunting task.

I want to help you!

A recent reader email has inspired me to create a new series of posts where I offer my suggestions for your beer pairing questions. Here’s how it will work: You comment, email, post on the Love Beer, Love Food Facebook page, etc. and I’ll choose some of my favorites for a monthly post.

So! For this inaugural post, here’s the email that started it:


My name is John and I just have a beer pairing question.  I am looking for a couple of styles that would pair well with blackberry pie.  Thank-you for your time, and keep up the good work with the website, I just discovered it recently and have been learning a lot more about craft beer.

Thanks again!

No, thank you John!

I do love a good beer dessert pairing and there are many good options when it comes to pairing beer with blackberry pie. Let’s consider the various aspects of the pie you may like to highlight. Continue reading Pairing Advice: Blackberry Pie

Meadventures: Making basic honey wine

Scientists believe that the first alcoholic beverage ever made was a combination  of honey, and perhaps grains, that wild yeast and bacteria fermented spontaneously. Someone along the way decided to drink said beverage and voila!

This honey wine/ beer mashup was nothing akin to our modern understanding of mead or beer, but it was the foundation of some of the greatest beverages known to man. Over many years, the two have become distinct beverages. That’s probably because the official term for such a hybrid of beer and mead is braggot, and anything that rhymes with maggot  was clearly not meant to be popular.

Homemade orange blossom mead

At heart, mead, aka honey wine, is a truly simple beverage. It can be carbonated like beer, or kept still like a table wine. I have mostly preferred carbonated meads personally. If you let mead ferment fully, and do not add any additional sugars, which is my preference, you’ll end up with a delicious, champagne-like beverage (especially if you use a champagne yeast for fermentation). If you’ve never tried mead, I’d recommend trying offerings from RedStone and B Nektar – both excellent mead makers. Continue reading Meadventures: Making basic honey wine

Beautiful Baked Brie with Crispy Sage

As you may recall, one of my favorite things in life, besides beer of course, is cheese.

I love it bubbling on top of my favorite Porter Onion Soup, mounded on pastas, smothered in sweet and spicy Jezebel dip, or simply sliced and served with bread and honey.

I’ve been making a version of this baked brie for a long time now. It honestly doesn’t get much simpler, but I’ve mastered the folding technique and gotten the bake time down to a science. I just had to share my tips with you, my fellow beer and food lovahs.


For those of you who haven’t ever used frozen puff pastry, get yourself acquainted, stat! It is extremely versatile. There are literally millions of things you can do with it. I’ve already told you about my Easy Apple Galette (with vanilla bourbon caramel sauce – eee!), and Jalapeño Puff Pastry Poppers – but this is even easier, just unbelievably pretty, and insanely delicious. Continue reading Beautiful Baked Brie with Crispy Sage

Stop Calling Your Beer ‘Hoppy’

Hoppy has practically become as ubiquitous a word as ‘beer’ in the craft world and I can. not. stand it anymore!

    “Wow, this beer is sooo hoppy.”

           “Ew, I can’t stand hoppy beers.”

  “What?! I LOVE hoppy beers!”

Sound familiar?

Sixpoint 'Beer is Culture' Glass

Before you get all in a huff, pointing out the zillion places I use the word hoppy in my blog posts, let me give you my reasoning. Continue reading Stop Calling Your Beer ‘Hoppy’

the brewing and culinary adventures of a Certified Cicerone®