Pumpkin and Stout Soft Pretzels

Soft pretzels, pumpkin spice, oatmeal stout

We know, we know…everyone is overdosing on pumpkin spice, it’s a fall cliche, it’s just too hip. But . . . so? We’re not ashamed to admit we love pumpkin spice! In fact, we’re downright happy to ride the pumpkin-spice tidal wave until it crests sometime next week, following the palate-resetting mini-candy-bar blowout that is Halloween.

Stout is very complementary to pumpkin; the flavors work really well together, especially with the addition of warm fall spices, yeast, and a touch of brown sugar.

You can use whatever stout makes your heart sing. (I used our own homebrewed oatmeal stout, which is a damn fine specimen, if I do say so myself.) Canned pumpkin works a treat–but be sure to use plain pureed pumpkin and not pie filling.

Don’t skip the boiling process–it takes only a few seconds and is super simple to accomplish. Make sure to let the pretzels cool before buttering and sugaring them. And this is one case where less is more, as far as the butter basting goes. Too much butter (hard to believe there is such a thing), and your spiced sugar will just clump up and fall off. Restrain yourself.

Click HERE to visit Growlers and Lace for the recipe for these fun-to-make-and-eat soft pretzels.

Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Beurre Noisette

sweet potato gnocchi, gnocchi recipes, Thanksgiving side dishes, sweet potatoes

Rich little pillows of deliciousness, these hearty sweet potato gnocchi are spiced with fresh nutmeg and finished simply with beurre noisette (which, I believe, means “drink me” in French. Only kidding…”beurre noisette” is just a pretty word for butter cooked until it’s hazelnut brown).

Beurre noisette, also called browned butter, is what young, ambitious butter aspires to be. It makes a ridiculously easy and utterly delectable sauce for anything from pasta to fish, and is a fantastic way to elevate any simple protein or pasta dish to “company” status.

Sweet potato gnocchi are perfect for the fall table. Try them alongside roasted ham, chicken, or pork. Consider starting a new tradition and serving these as a side dish with your turkey this Thanksgiving!

Click here to find this recipe on Eat Real.

George Washington: Beer Guy

5 Boozy Facts You Probably Didn’t Know About Our First President

George Washington, beer, home brewer, Founding Father, Famous beer drinkers

There’s no shortage of anecdotes about our first president’s honesty, courage, and general uprightness. Lesser known, but no less endearing, is his reputation as a home brewer and enthusiast of quality beer. He frowned on drunkenness (we get it–who has time for a hangover when you’re running a brand-new country AND one of the most profitable whiskey distilleries in the nation?), but he could bend an elbow with the best of them.

Visit Growlers and Lace to read the rest of this article.

MillerCoors to Acquire Majority Interest in Saint Archer Brewing Co.

Saint Archer Pale Ale

MillerCoors announced today that its craft and import division, Tenth and Blake, will acquire a majority interest in San Diego’s Saint Archer Brewing Company.

Saint Archer, founded in 2013, forecasts a sale of 35,000 barrels this year, a 100 percent increase over last year’s sales, making it one of the fastest-growing breweries in California. The good news is that Tenth and Blake intends to keep Josh Landan, Saint Archer cofounder and president, at the helm.


LDW 2015: SoCal Beer Tour


What did you guys do for Labor Day? We drank beer. All weekend long. It’s not as profligate as it sounds; we paced ourselves.

We were in Oceanside for a soccer tournament, so during our time off, we took side trips to as many breweries and brew pubs as we could.Note: if you’re looking for a place to vacation and craft beer is your jam, I highly recommend a trip to the San Diego area. According to the West Coaster, there are 115 operational brew houses in the San Diego area (as of September 2015).

The breweries/brew pubs we hit in our 3-day stay:


Red’s Wolf – Book 1 in the Grimm Woods Series

Reds Wolf Cover

The deeper the woods, the darker the secrets…

Arden Wilde is at the top of her game. She’s got a gorgeous, attentive boyfriend on the fast track to a promising medical career, she attends the best culinary school in the nation—the Culinary Institute of America in New York, and is nearly finished with her externship with an eminent chocolatier. But when she’s called home to Grimm Lake, California to help care for her ailing grandmother, Arden agrees without hesitation.

Running through the woods becomes one of her passions, and she runs every day on her way to help care for her grandmother. Until she meets the enigmatic Tate Foster, the darkly handsome, tattooed manager of the Little Bear Brewing Co., sunbathing nude by the path to the lakeshore. He invites her to swim with him, but Arden declines—she has a boyfriend, after all. But it isn’t long before thoughts of Tate become more than she can ignore.

When she mentions him to her grandmother, she’s given a stern warning. The Fosters are “old Grimms,” from one of the original founding families in the town, who keep mostly to themselves. There are legends, ugly stories, about the old families and their Germanic roots, and about the Grimm wolves—shapeshifters who lived double lives as wolves and humans. Arden doesn’t believe a word of her grandmother’s fairy tales, until a night of Tate’s fierce, skilled sexuality drives all rational thought from Arden’s mind.

When a tourist is found murdered in the woods, savaged by animals, Arden isn’t sure what to believe. She knows she can never go back to her old boyfriend in New York. And the brazen, feral Tate has no intention of letting her go anywhere…

Available on Amazon

More from Arianna Archer

Diet Brain Is Real and It Is Not Pretty

This morning I went to grab a can of cat food from the pantry and found that I’d been putting lidded half-empty cans–among other items (a spatula, two forks)–back on the shelf instead of in the fridge. If mold were a salable commodity, I could finance my competition spray tan.

Read more at Run the Bend

Review: Del Real Foods Heat-and-Serve Dishes

I’m not generally a fan of pre-cooked packaged foods. I’m picky in a way that makes most of these products fall far short of what I like to eat–and what I like to serve to my family. I prefer scratch-made, authentic food without the chemicals and additives that most processed packaged foods are burdened with. That said, there are times when I’ve used ready-made products on a whim (shopping hungry gets me every time) or by necessity (barely enough time to eat, let alone cook) and have been pleasantly surprised.

Read more at Eat Real