Edible Michiana Winter 2014 : Page 24

SOUR NOTES In brewing, unlike music, they’re a good thing BY MA Y A PAR S O N S our beers are said to be the oldest style of beer in the world. For thousands of years, according to craft brewer and sour beer enthusiast Trevor Klimek of Paw Paw Brewing Company (Paw Paw, Michigan), all beers were sour beers, fermented by wild yeasts in the air. Wild yeasts, along with bacteria—and, in some cas-es, fruit (think cherries or raspberries)—give sour beers a pronounced acidic flavor. Sour beers are typically dry, made with little or no hops and are often more reminis-cent of wine or cider than other beers. Long popular in Belgium where they have histori-cally been made with spontaneously occurring yeasts and bacteria, sour beers are increasingly trendy among craft beer lovers in the United States who enjoy their refreshing, funky flavors. THE LAST FRONTIER Klimek calls sour beers “the last frontier of American craft brewing.” Craft brewers, he points out, have embraced everything from extreme malted beers to high-alcohol imperial stouts to super hoppy brews: “They have jammed in as many hops as you can in a fermenter!” Sour beers, however, are a new challenge. Indeed, several Michiana brewers told us that they do not brew sour beers because they are “too risky.” Wild yeast, Klimek explains, is more aggressive than conventional ale yeasts, and if brewers don’t work extra hard to keep everything perfectly clean, wild yeasts can cross contaminate other beers—and nobody wants wild yeasts in their mild English ale. But, Klimek is emphatic, brewing with wild yeast is totally doable for small-scale brewers. “One of my huge passions,” he says, “is to introduce sour beers to peo-ple”—including fellow brewers. If brewers can maintain separate Belgian and American yeast strains in their operations, Klimek edible Michiana edible Michiana 24 24 Winter 2014 Winter 2014 P HOTOS COURTESY OF R HINO M EDIA P RODUCTIONS

Sour Notes

By Maya Parson

In brewing, unlike music, they're a good thing

Sour beers are said to be the oldest style of beer in the world. For thousands of years, according to craft brewer and sour beer enthusiast Trevor Klimek of Paw Paw Brewing Company (Paw Paw, Michigan), all beers were sour beers, fermented by wild yeasts in the air.

Wild yeasts, along with bacteria–and, in some cases, fruit (think cherries or raspberries)–give sour beers a pronounced acidic flavor. Sour beers are typically dry, made with little or no hops and are often more reminiscent of wine or cider than other beers.

Long popular in Belgium where they have historically been made with spontaneously occurring yeasts and bacteria, sour beers are increasingly trendy among craft beer lovers in the United States who enjoy their refreshing, funky flavors.

THE LAST FRONTIER

Klimek calls sour beers "the last frontier of American craft brewing." Craft brewers, he points out, have embraced everything from extreme malted beers to high-alcohol imperial stouts to super hoppy brews: "They have jammed in as many hops as you can in a fermenter!" Sour beers, however, are a new challenge.

Indeed, several Michiana brewers told us that they do not brew sour beers because they are "too risky." Wild yeast, Klimek explains, is more aggressive than conventional ale yeasts, and if brewers don't work extra hard to keep everything perfectly clean, wild yeasts can cross contaminate other beers–and nobody wants wild yeasts in their mild English ale.

But, Klimek is emphatic, brewing with wild yeast is totally doable for small-scale brewers. "One of my huge passions," he says, "is to introduce sour beers to people"– including fellow brewers.

If brewers can maintain separate Belgian and American yeast strains in their operations, Klimek says, they can contain sour yeasts as well. Paw Paw Brewing Company, along with The Livery Microbrewery in Benton Harbor, Michigan, which has been brewing sours for almost a decade, are cases in point.

LOCAL CULTURES WITH A CULT FOLLOWING

In 2008, Klimek began propagating the wild yeasts that he now uses at Paw Paw Brewing Company at his home in Paw Paw. When he approached Paw Paw's owners about making sour beers shortly after they opened in 2011, they were initially skeptical. Now, he says, the brewery's sour beers, which include four flagship sours: Bluegrass Sour Blonde, Barrel Aged Sour James, Red Barn Sour and Free Range Sour Stout (all aged in oak barrels from St. Julian Winery in Paw Paw) as well as "extra special really crazy fun things" like a Sour Spruce Ale–a sour stout made with spruce tips–have developed a "cult following."

The Livery's sours also have serious fans. Verchuosity, a barrel-aged Belgian amber ale made with sweet and tart Michigan cherries, has an overall score of 99 points on RateBeer.com and is rated as the #11 fruit beer in the world. Other popular sour styles at The Livery include a bière de garde aged in white wine barrels from Tabor Hill Winery (Buchanan, Michigan), a Belgian golden quadruple aged in bourbon barrels and a kriek made with Michigan cherries.

Paw Paw Brewing and The Livery both typically have at least one sour on tap.

SOMETHING IN THE AIR

Today, a handful of other local breweries are also producing sours. Iechyd Da Brewing Company in Elkhart, Indiana, uses a sour mash to make their TataRosa, a raspberry Berliner weisse– a sour wheat beer traditional to Northern Germany. Owner Summer Lewis explains the process as one of "funkifying" the mash (the mix of heated water and grain) by allowing it to sit out overnight. During that time, the acidity rises and the mash begins to ferment. The result is a mildly sour beer with a gorgeous pink color from the added fruit. (TataRosa is only available seasonally in the summer months.)

Round Barn Brewery in Baroda, Michigan has made several sours in the past two to three years. Brewmaster Chris Noel is currently working on culturing local yeast strains to develop a sour style specific to Southwest Michigan in collaboration with Greenbush Brewing Company in Sawyer.

At Round Barn, the brewery's first batch of sour beer was a happy accident from their early days when the brewery shared a building with the Round Barn Winery. (Th ey are now in separate locations.) One day, the machine used to squeeze grapes for the winery ended up in close proximity to the beer fermenters. "All of the sudden," says Chris Noel, "the room started smelling like grapes." When they tasted the beer a few days later, it was deliciously tangy. The name of that first batch? Mother Pucker.

With its abundance of raspberries, grapes and other fruits, Southwest Michigan's fruit belt, Trevor Klimek says, "is a fantastic place to have wild yeast in the air"–and a perfect place to make sour beers.

Maya Parson is the editor of Edible Michiana magazine.

Paw Paw Brewing Company
929 E. Michigan Ave.
Paw Paw, Michigan
269.415.0145
PawPawBrewing.com

The Livery Brewing Company
190 5th St.
Benton Harbor, Michigan
269.925.8760
LiveryBrew.com

Iechyd Da Brewing Company
317 N. Main St.
Elkhart, Indiana
574.293.0506
IechydDaBrewingCompany.com

Round Barn Brewing Company
9151 First St.
Baroda, Michigan
269.326.7059
RoundBarnWinery.com/brewery.php

PUCKER UP, MICHIANA! WHERE TO GET YOUR SOUR ON

The Livery (LiveryBrew.com) in Benton Harbor, Michigan, has been making sours for nearly a decade. Verchuosity, their Belgian amber ale, is fermented with wild yeast, loaded with sweet and sour Michigan cherries and aged in oak to give it tart fruit complexities and rich barrel character. It is currently rated as the #11 fruit beer in the world on RateBeer.com. Maillot Jaune, a light and funky bière de garde, is aged in white wine barrels from Tabor Hill Winery (Buchanan, Michigan). Agent 99, a Belgian golden quad wild ale with an assertive tartness, is aged in bourbon barrels. And Cherry Friek, a Belgian-style kriek, is made with locally sourced Michigan fruit.

Both Round Barn Brewery (RoundBarnWinery.com) in Baroda, Michigan and Iechyd Da Brewing Company (IechydDaBrewingCompany.com) in Elkhart, Indiana, make a Berliner weisse–a style of sour wheat beer traditional to Northern Germany that dates back to the 16th century. The Iechyd Da version, TataRosa, is flavored with raspberries and available seasonally. At Round Barn, the Barodinger Weisse is served with raspberry or black currant syrup. Round Barn also makes several other styles of sour beer and is collaborating with Greenbush Brewing Company on a new sour.

Arclight Brewing Company (ArclightBrewing.com) in Watervliet, Michigan, makes cherry and raspberry sours in the Belgian lambic style. The beers are aged in barrels from Karma Vista Winery (Coloma, Michigan). Head brewer and co-owner Edward Nash recently harvested wild yeasts from a nearby farm for the brewery's sours. Look for Arclight's Cherry Funk Libido, an American cherry sour, in the spring of 2015.

Just outside Michiana, try Paw Paw Brewing Company (PawPawBrewing.com) in Paw Paw, Michigan, which specializes in sour beers, including its four flagship sours: Bluegrass Sour Blonde, Barrel Aged Sour James, Red Barn Sour and Free Range Sour Stout (all aged in oak barrels from St. Julian Winery in Paw Paw). Gary, Indiana's 18th Street Brewery (18thStreetBrewery.com) houses The Sour Note Brewing project (SourNoteBrewing.com), a gypsy brewing operation that invites guest brewers to create small-batch sour beers in a variety of styles.

Rumor has it that several other local breweries, including Evil Czech Brewery (EvilCzechBrewery.com) in Mishawaka, Indiana, and Bare Hands Brewery (BareHandsBrew.com) in Granger, Indiana, have sour beers in the works. And be on the lookout for a barrel-aged sour from Burn 'Em Brewing (BurnEmBrewing.com) in Michigan City, Indiana.

NOT YOUR ORDINARY BIRD

Classic Roast Chicken and Four Variations Worthy of a Feast

BY TARA SWARTZENDRUBER-LANDIS | PHOTOGRAPHY BY D. LUCAS LANDIS

With a little preparation, a roast chicken offers great rewards. Our Classic Roast Chicken and four variations are recipes worthy of a feast–even if it's a Thursday night.

Whole chickens abound in most meat community-supported agriculture (CSA) subscriptions and are available at your local farmers market. Our recipes will work well on a bird that has lived a good life and may not be as fatty as a typical grocery store bird.

An added bonus: Roasting a whole bird means leftovers! Use meat for making salads or sandwiches or toss the bones in a stockpot and make your own homemade chicken stock.

Tara Swartzendruber-Landis is Edible Michiana's recipe editor and food stylist. After a decade living on the East Coast, she is happy to be gardening, cooking and eating in the Michiana area again.

Classic Roast Chicken
Serves 4–6

1 (3 1/2–4 pound) chicken
1/4 cup kosher salt
4–5 garlic cloves
1/2 lemon
3 stalks tarragon
3 stalks thyme
1/2–3/4 cup white wine
4 tablespoons butter, melted

On a large plate, place the chicken and dump the salt all over the bird. Using your hands, try to get as much salt to stick to the flesh and skin as possible. Place in refrigerator uncovered for 12–18 hours. The bird will turn a bit waxy looking and the skin will dry out.

Remove from refrigerator 1 hour before roasting to bring the chicken to room temperature.

Preheat oven to 425°. Wash off the salt and pat the chicken dry with a paper towel. Stuff the cavity with the garlic cloves, lemon, tarragon and thyme. Pour the wine in the bottom of the pan and brush the butter over top of the bird.

Roast the chicken for 20 minutes and reduce heat to 375°. Continue roasting the chicken for another hour and 15–30 minutes, until a thermometer registers 160°–165° and the juices run clear. Pull the bird out of the oven and allow it to rest for 10–15 minutes. Carve up the meat and put the juices in a gravy dish to pour over the top. Serve with crusty bread, mashed potatoes or rice pilaf.

Roast Chicken with Spice Rub

Serves 4–6

1 (3 1/2–4 pound) chicken
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon paprika (mild)
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon oregano, dried
1/2 teaspoon black pepper, ground
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon mustard, ground
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 tablespoon salt
Olive oil

Wash and dry the chicken and place in a medium-size roasting pan. Mix the spice mixture and, using your hands, rub all over the chicken. Place breast-side up into the refrigerator and leave uncovered overnight or for at least 8 hours.

Remove from oven at least 1 hour before roasting. Preheat oven to 425°. Pour 2–3 tablespoons of olive oil over the chicken and place into oven. After 20 minutes turn the heat down to 375° and continue to roast for another 40–50 minutes, until the meat pulls easily from the bone and the temperature reads 160°–165°. If the pan is completely dry, pour another 2–3 tablespoons of olive oil over the chicken. Remove the chicken and allow to sit for 10–15 minutes before serving.

Roast Chicken with Clementine, Fennel and Tarragon

Serves 4–6

1 (3 1/2–4 pound) whole chicken
1/4 cup sea or kosher salt
1 head fennel, thinly sliced
1 carrot, thinly sliced
1 parsnip, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon fresh tarragon
4 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons Sambuca or grappa
1 clementine, thinly sliced

Wash and dry the chicken. Cover with the salt and leave uncovered in the refrigerator for 12–18 hours.

Remove from refrigerator 1 hour prior to roasting. Wash off the salt and pat the chicken dry with a towel. Preheat oven to 425°.

Place the vegetables and tarragon in the bottom of a roasting pan and place the chicken, breast-side up, in the pan. Pour the butter and alcohol over the chicken. Place the clementines in a single layer on top of the chicken. Place in the oven and roast for 20 minutes. Turn the heat down to 375° and continue roasting for another 45–50 minutes.

Remove from the oven and allow to sit for 10–15 minutes, then serve.

Roast Chicken with Spices and Sambal

Serves 4–6

1 (3 1/2–4 pound) whole chicken
1/3 cup ginger, fresh, sliced
3 cloves garlic
2 red chilies, fresh
2 teaspoons coriander, ground
1 teaspoon turmeric
2 tablespoons lemongrass, fresh
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon lime zest
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
3 tablespoons coconut oil
2 kaffir lime leaves (optional)

Sambal:
3 tablespoons lime juice, fresh
1/2 teaspoon salt
12 red chilies, fresh
1 tablespoon ginger, fresh

Remove the backbone from the chicken using kitchen shears. Place the ginger, garlic, chilies, coriander, turmeric, lemongrass, salt, lime zest, lime juice, brown sugar, cayenne and grapeseed oil into a food processor or blender. Process to a fine paste. Rub this mixture all over the chicken , and kaffir lime leaves and place in the refrigerator for 8–12 hours or overnight.

Remove from the oven 1 hour before roasting. Place in a baking pan. Add kaffir lime leaves (if using). Melt the coconut oil and pour over the chicken. Preheat oven to 425°. Bake for 20 minutes and then drop the temperature to 375° for another 35–40 minutes. The flattened chicken will cook quicker than a regular roasted chicken. Remove from the oven when the juices run clear. Serve with rice and sambal.

To make the sambal: Place all of the ingredients in a food processor and process until finely chopped.

Roast Chicken with Apricots and Cider

Serves 4-6

1 (3 1/2–4 pound) whole chicken
1/4 cup kosher or sea salt
20 dried apricots (about 1 cup)
3/4 cup cider
1 cup thinly sliced red onion
1/2 cup raw hazelnuts
3 whole allspice
2 tablespoons melted butter
2 tablespoons olive oil

Wash and dry the chicken. Cover completely with the salt and place breast-side up in the refrigerator for 12–18 hours. One hour before roasting, remove from refrigerator. Wash off the salt and dry.

Place the apricots, cider, onions, hazelnuts and allspice in a roasting pan. Place the chicken, breast-side up, on top. Preheat oven to 425° and pour the butter and olive oil over the chicken. Place in oven and bake for 20 minutes.

Drop the temperature to 375° and continue roasting for 40–50 minutes. Baste a couple of times.

Remove from oven and allow to sit for 10–15 minutes, then serve.

Read the full article at http://onlinedigeditions.com/article/Sour+Notes/1863805/234594/article.html.

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