Thanksgiving Tips & Tricks from OBB’s Chef Bob
Ready to give thanks and get Chubby this Thanksgiving holiday? In preparation, we’re over here doing snack-calisthenics, trying on stretchy pants and dosing ourselves with tryptophan. In anticipation of eating and drinking until we’re uncomfortable, we talked to our dude Bob Chrisley, the chef and main flavor wizard at our Boulder, CO, taproom, for some turkey day tips and tricks.
Q&A With Bob:
What beers do you recommend pairing with a traditional Thanksgiving dinner?
It comes down to personal preference, but roasty, malty beers like Old Chub or something hop-forward like Dale’s Pale Ale go well with most traditional spreads like turkey, stuffing, green beans, mashed potato, gravy, etc. For the fan of lighter style beers, something bright and clean on the palate like Mama’s Little Yella Pils would complement home-cooked comfort foods.
What about dessert?
You can’t go wrong with a pour of Ten Fidy Imperial Stout paired with something chocolate, like cookies or brownies.
How should I introduce my less adventurous relatives to craft beer?
As far as introducing a novice beer drinker to OBB beers, start light and go darker. Start in small amounts so the person doesn’t feel committed to finishing it if they don’t like it. It’ll take time for certain palates to embrace the different profiles of beer, but that’s ok. Since our taste buds change every 5-7 years, we can always revisit trying new things to eat and drink and see if we like them.
[PRO-TIP: We recommend grabbing an Oskar Blues CANundrum pack so you can share a variety of craft beer flavors with friends and relatives. Find it near you with the Beer Finder]
What do I need to know about cooking with beer?
Remember, if you wouldn’t drink it, don’t cook with it. The length and intensity of the cooking process will change the beer and lend a bitter flavor the longer you cook it. Much of the hop aromatics of the beer will be lost if it’s cooked for a long time. To retain the nasal flavor profile of the hops, it’s best to add the beer at the end of a recipe after reducing the heat. Darker beers do better with longer cooking times and hoppier beers need a short cook time to retain the flavor profile.
Experiment, and then do it again, and again. Almost any recipe that calls for water, you can replace it with beer. Not all beers will work in every application, hence the need for experimentation.
[See below for Bob’s Old Chub Gravy Recipe]
Do you do anything special on Thanksgiving?
We’ve had a vegan Friendsgiving for the past few years to accommodate our vegan friends. We always toast pre-meal and numerous times throughout the meal – sounds cliche, but we focus on giving thanks for what we have. Focusing on gratitude often lost in our day-to-day lives. We’re a transplant family from PA and we invite friends and friends of friends so we can all connect and create that feeling of love and connection.
BOB’S OLD CHUB GRAVY RECIPE
WHAT YOU NEED
- 5 tbs unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 yellow onion
- 2 garlic cloves
- 2 cups stock
- 1 cup Old Chub Scotch Ale
- Pan drippings from roasting turkey
WHAT YOU DO
- Add butter, chopped onion and garlic to saucepan and cook until soft, about 5 minutes
- Add the flour and whisk until smooth. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly
- Add the stock, beer and pan drippings and bring to a boil, stirring constantly until thickened, about 6 minutes
- Remove from the heat. Add salt to taste
Need more cooking-with-beer recipes? Get the Oskar Blues Brewery cookbook – a collection of recipes and flavors put together and tested by our team, all using our favorite secret ingredient – Beer. Meanwhile, try the gravy, crack a beer and have a great Thanksgiving, Friendsgiving, Beersgiving, or however you hang out for the holidays. Cheers!