Liquid Gold with a Little Spice

Jack D'Or label

Well, the Red Sox home opener is this week and there is no better way to say goodbye to college basketball and hello to the baseball season than with a Jack D’Or by Pretty Little Things.  Brewed in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Jack D’Or is what Dann and Martha Paquette call a Saison Americain and is styled after the Belgium Saison.  This bright, golden yellow farmhouse ale has aromas that are spicy, citrusy with a splash of clove.  But the taste….oh the taste… hoppy with lemon zest and a bit peppery.  This is one of those beers that just make you smile the moment it passes your lips.

According to the Beer Advocate and one of Bauer’s resident beer guys, Andy, Jack D’Or is best suited with curried foods or cheese.  I say why not both.  Buy yourself a few bottles, invite some people over and serve up some crusty bread,  Gorganzola and Fontina cheese to get everyone started.

For the main course though, if you are like me and can’t afford to buy Indian takeout for all your friends, let me give you a nice simple recipe for you to make.  But first… a disclaimer.  I know there are vegetarians out there in the world who enjoy beer too so this recipe is for you.  For those that aren’t, feel free to add sauteed chicken to this dish to make it, shall we say….meatier.

Minted Rice with Garbanzo Curry**:

Minted Rice:

1 cinnamon stick (~3 inches)

2 whole cloves

1/8 tsp cumin seeds

2 tsp canola oil

1 cup of uncooked long grain rice

1 cups of water

½ cup minced fresh mint

Garbanzo Curry:

1 medium onion, chopped

1 cinnamon stick (~3 inches)

1 Tbsp canola oil

1 tsp curry powder

1 garlic clove, minced

¼ tsp minced fresh ginger root

1 can garbanzo beans

1 cup of water

1 can (8 oz) tomato sauce

2 Tbsp lemon juice

½ tsp of salt

½ cup minced fresh cilantro

In a large saucepan over medium heat saute cinnamon, cloves and cumin seeds in oil until aromatic (1-2 minutes).  Add rice; cook and stir until lightly browned.  Add the water and mint and then bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat; cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes-until the rice is tender.

In a large skillet, saute the chopped onion and cinnamon in oil until onion is tender.  Add the curry, garlic and ginger.  Cook 1 minute longer.  Add garbanzo beans (and if you choose sauteed chicken), water, tomato sauce, lemon juice and salt.  Bring to a boil.  Then reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 4-6 minutes until it is slightly thickened.  Discard the cinnamon and add the cilantro.  Fluff the rice with a fork and discard the cinnamon and cloves.  Serve the garbanzo curry over the rice and pour yourself a Jack D’or!

If you really want to impress your friends then make your own curry powder.  I recommend this because fresh curry is more flavorful and more aromatic than store bought.  It’s really easy (if you have a spice grinder that is).

3 Cardamon seeds

2 tsp ground coriander

2 tsp cumin

1 tsp ground turmeric

1/2 tsp chili powder

1/2 tsp of pepper

1/8 tsp of fennel seed

Remove the Cardamon seeds from the pod if needed.  In a spice grinder (or mortar and pestle if you have one) combine all the ingredients; grind until mixture becomes a powder.  This can be stored in an airtight container for 1 year.


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