Continuing with the theme in which all things in the Universe seem to intersect at that beautiful moment in which activism and beer meet. It is what we do at Revolution and Beer. Activism isn’t about over-turning cars, loud chants or Occupying public places. Activism, true activism covers a broad spectrum depending fully upon the injustice or cause being championed. Boiled down into a common denominator, it is about lessening the burden, or sharing the burden from neighbors and those struggling against burden. May is Celiac’s Awareness Month. Brian and I love food and beer, and since there is no cure for Celiac’s currently, what could prove a better mission? The only treatment for Celiac’s is dietary maintenance.
Earlier in the month, we talked about a line of gluten-free beers from New Planet. The regular beer drinker will note the difference in brewing gluten-free beers with sorghum syrup rather than malts. In a pinch, these beers would pass most tastes. For those with Celiac’s or other’s with wheat sensitivities, they are an anchor to a more normal-feeling diet. One of the three from New Planet was very enjoyable. Check out the piece for which beer I’m talking about.
But alas, the Belgians have weighed in with two strong offerings in the Gluten-free arena. Brewed by Brasserie De Brunehaut in Brunehaut, in southwestern Belgium, Brian and I sampled the Amber Ale and Blonde Ale, both touting a respectable 6.5ABV. Following a 1000 tradition, these beers reflect that value and artistry of that legacy. We could not tell, as with other gluten-free beers, that they were indeed gluten-free. Immediately we started talking food. Because of the health dimension to the topic, we reached out to our friend, and author of Simply Healthy Gourmet, Carole Cooper, living an enviable existence in the wilderness overlooking the Lake Superior shore.
A warning, if you have an issue with delicious food, please leave the room now. We’ll wait a moment for those folks to leave. A little more. Some folks seem to be moving a little sl…Okay, their gone. Let’s talk food.
It’s grilling season, so I quickly inquired about a hearty meet dish that would highlight both of these beers simultaneously. The Amber Ale, has these really pleasing toasted hops flavor. The Blonde was full-bodied and a bit sweeter, pouring to a great clean golden hue, with a strong white head. Carole instantly referred me to a roasted lamb dish on page 75, that I thought was the perfect choice, the herbal earthiness of the lamb was a natural for these beers. But her side dish in the book was made with Orzo pasta, a bit of a no-no for the gluten in the pasta. Try as I might, I couldn’t find a gluten-free Orzo.
“How about a Basmati rice?” she offered as a substitute for the Orzo. Add to the basmati, chopped asparagus, juicy, sweet red grape tomatoes with a drizzle of Olive oil and a squeeze of fresh lemon, and you’ve got a tasty and satisfying side dish. But here’s the kicker, not all rice is gluten-free. Commercial or restaurant rice can have ingredients and additives that add gluten. Make it fresh yourself with a teaspoon of cumin for that smoky taste, or about a half teaspoon of mint to the cup of rice, pinch of salt and 13/4 cups of water for a different twist; Gluten-free and delicious.
We truly enjoyed these beers, and were tossing around possibilities for both gluten and gluten-free dishes. And we are really interested in readers sharing their gluten-free recipe pairings that can be shared with our gluten-sensitive neighbors. In the meantime, kick back with an Amber or Blonde Ale from Brasserie De Brunehaut. You’ll be pleasantly surprised. See, who said that activism couldn’t be fun, and delicious!
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