On my recent trip to Illinois, I was fortunate enough to come across a variety of Boulevard Brewing Company beers. How do you choose which ones to grab? This was my first experience with Tank 7, and I do mean this.....I am completely in love.
It pours a deep bright golden color with a head of pillowy foam probably sent from the clouds in heaven. The nose is fruity and yeasty, with notes of spice and hay. On the front of the palate, you get flavors of water cracker, pepper, barnyard, citrus and yeast, leading into a crackling dry, spritzy finish. And the 8.5% abv? Where is it!? This is an incredibly smooth beer that hits all my hot spots. Reaffirms my belief in that farmhouse ales are my JAM.
I'm advocate of the one pot/pan dinners. Why? There's only one vessel to clean in the end! If I'm full as a tick and feeling relaxed, I don't want a lot of clean up.
Hence, this meal idea was born.
My accomplice, Ben, marinated the pork chops in a blend of fresh garlic, soy sauce, and brown sugar. Yum! After a few hours, I let the meat come to room temperature while a cast iron got really hot. Don't forget to use coconut or grapeseed oil...EVOO will burn!
I sauteed the chops for about 4 minutes per side, then removed them onto a plate and into the oven to keep warm. Next, I added about 4 giant handfuls of kale...it will wilt down! Add as much as you like and more oil if the chops didn't leave much behind. When it started turning bright green, I added in a few splashes of chicken stock and about 1/3 cup of dijon mustard. I seasoned it with salt & pepper and added the chops back on top. Finally, I simmered it all till chops were warmed thru and the liquid had mostly evaporated.
Well...Did They Pair Well Together?
I found this to be a very successful pairing! The beer and the meat were the same weight, and the bitterness of the beer offered a nice contrast to the sweetness of the meat (especially the caramelized bits of the meat from the cast iron!). The kale exhibits a bitter, earthy quality already, so that obviously paired well with the beer. The citrusy hops added a squirt of bright lemony freshness. The bitterness of the beer cut thru the vinegary flavor of the dijon while the carbonation lifted the creaminess and cleansed the palate.
Get a fork full with a piece of meat AND the dijon kale.....absolute bliss.
I want to know what you're eating & drinking!
I hope you try this recipe on a weekday night after work for an easy but fancy looking dinner!
If you're on Instagram, hashtag your pic with #LanaDelBeer and let me get a look!
Till next time, Boils & Ghouls (It's almost Halloween)...
Welcome to my blog! I want to show the world a simple meal paired with craft beer can elevate their dining experience to unique levels. Cheers!