Two-Ingredient Pumpkin Apple Shandy

I hope you’re ready for a cocktail that’s as easy as it is delicious!

This Two-Ingredient Pumpkin Apple Shandy is the most delicious, easy fall cocktail!

This Two-Ingredient Pumpkin Apple Shandy is quite likely the drink of any fall-lover’s dreams. After all, the two ingredients involved include pumpkin and apple, which we all know are the stars of the show for the months of at least September, October, November and maybe even December. And who doesn’t want a crowd-pleasing beverage that can be whipped up at a moment’s notice?

In case you’re not quite familiar with what a shandy is (aka “radler” in German), it’s basically a low-octane cocktail made with a mixture of light lager and some sort of citrus juice. Now, I’m not one to normally want to mix my beer with anything, but when it comes to pumpkin-flavored beer mixed with my favorite apple cider, I can certainly make an exception!

Pumpkin beer and apple cider are the only two ingredients you need for this Two-Ingredient Pumpkin Apple Shandy!

And now that I’m breastfeeding our little one, I’m all about the low-octane drinks. Less alcohol + more liquids equal better hydration, which we all know is really important when you’re feeding for two!

At this time of year there is certainly no shortage of pumpkin beers out there, so feel free to use your favorite. To be honest, I’ve been a little bummed that Trader Joe’s hasn’t had a bigger selection this season, but I’ve still been able to find some of my favorites at stores like BevMo and Gelson’s. Right now the two I really like that I can seem to find fairly easily are Dogfish Head’s Punkin Ale and Ballast Point’s Pumpkin Down, so if you see either of those, I highly recommend you give them a try.

As far as the apple cider goes, you can either buy some from the store (preferably with as little added sugar as possible) or make your own using my super-easy recipe for From-Scratch Slow Cooker Spiced Apple Cider (which you should honestly have on hand at all times during this holiday season anyway.)

This Two-Ingredient Pumpkin Apple Shandy is the perfect low-alcohol cocktail to serve over the holidays.

Aside from the fact that this Two-Ingredient Pumpkin Apple Shandy involves, yes, just TWO ingredients, I also love it because it is sooo easy to make. I mean, you don’t even need to break out the cocktail shaker or jigger! You can totally eyeball the amounts, or just adjust the ratio of pumpkin beer to apple cider however you happen to prefer. I prefer a little more beer to my cider, but if you want more cider to your beer, by all means go ahead!

One final tip when making this delicious drink: Be sure your ingredients are well-chilled before mixing them together. I don’t often like to use ice in beer cocktails because I feel it waters them down too much, so you want to start out with your beer and cider being as cold as possible.

This Two-Ingredient Pumpkin Apple Shandy is the perfect cocktail to serve at any time of day during the holidays.

I hope you enjoy this Two-Ingredient Pumpkin Apple Shandy as much as I have been!

Two-Ingredient Pumpkin Apple Shandy
Prep Time
5 mins
 

This easy cocktail may be low on alcohol but it's certainly high in flavor! Two favorite fall ingredients come together to make one delicious drink.

Course: Drinks
Servings: 1 cocktail
Author: CaliGirl Cooking
Ingredients
  • 9 ounces of your favorite pumpkin beer, chilled
  • 6 ounces apple cider, chilled
Instructions
  1. Combine ingredients in a large glass and enjoy!

Pull-Apart Beer Bread with Comte and Whole Grain Mustard

The ultimate tri-fecta.

Pull-Apart Beer Bread with Comte and Whole Grain Mustard | CaliGirl Cooking

Especially for this here day before St. Patrick’s Day/morning after a night out with some of my besties to celebrate my birthday. I mean, how much better can it get to both recover from last night and get ready for another night of celebrating? (Or, in my likely case, just eating my weight in Irish food?) I’m thinking Pull-Apart Beer Bread with Comte and Whole Grain Mustard, a slow-cooker corned beef recipe (I’m going to give this one from Half-Baked Harvest a shot), some Chocolate Stout Cupcakes with Irish Cream Buttercream for dessert, and maybe, just MAYBE, a Matcha Colada to really round out the meal. Who’s with me?

Pull-Apart Beer Bread with Comte and Whole Grain Mustard | CaliGirl Cooking

But let’s get to the point here. I really don’t want this uber-yummy Pull-Apart Beer Bread with Comte and Whole Grain Mustard to lose the spotlight, because trust me when I say it is soooooooo tasty and very worthy of the little extra effort it takes to make.

Confession: I actually copy-catted this recipe from Notch8, the restaurant in the hotel we stayed at when my mom and I went to Vancouver in January. I’m sure you’ve all seen sweet versions of pull-apart bread (like this or this), but this was the first time I’d come across a SAVORY version. As soon as my mom and I saw a menu item that listed bread, cheese, and mustard as ingredients  (in the middle of the afternoon when we were sooo ready for an afternoon snack, mind you) we knew we had to give it a shot. Let me tell you. Wowza! It was amazing. I immediately knew I had to try and recreate it at home.

And recreate it I did! I knew that I needed to make the beer bread a yeast bread (as opposed to a quick bread) so I turned to my mom’s trusty Beer Bagel recipe for inspiration and guidance. I then went out and got me some Comte cheese (if you don’t know what this is, it’s very similar to Gruyere… I found mine at Trader Joe’s) and some whole grain mustard. As you can see, the ingredients are pretty darn easy to come by so you really have no excuse to not make Pull-Apart Beer Bread with Comte and Whole Grain Mustard (say that ten times fast) in the next couple of days.

Pull-Apart Beer Bread with Comte and Whole Grain Mustard | CaliGirl Cooking

Since the bread is a yeast bread, it does take some time to rise. But that’s no biggie! I have to say that I was worried because my dough didn’t seem to be rising quite as much as I wanted it to, but everything turned out in the end. You just have to trust that your oven will do all of the work!

Once the dough has gone through its double rise, we slice it up (like you would a loaf of bread) and coat the sides with the mustard and cheese. We then line all the slices back up together in the loaf pan for them to rise and bake into each other in the oven. And of course we top it all with more cheese! Not only does the slicing before we bake ensure we can more easily pull apart the bread when it’s done, but it also helps us make sure we get the yummy fillings evenly dispersed throughout.

Pull-Apart Beer Bread with Comte and Whole Grain Mustard | CaliGirl Cooking

Okay, before I leave you with the recipe I MUST make a suggestion. Not only is this a fantastic addition to any St. Patrick’s Day menu, we also (accidentally) discovered that Pull-Apart Beer Bread with Comte and Whole Grain Mustard is THE perfect snack to pack for wine tasting. Seriously, if you think about it, it’s all of your favorite wine tasting snacks rolled into one neat little loaf! No need for an elaborately packed picnic basket or cooler when you’ve got one of these bad boys with you 😉 (Side note: I think I’m going to keep building on this idea and try a version with some sort of charcuterie added to the mix soon…Stay tuned!)

So what do you say? St. Patrick’s Day is tomorrow and I know a lot of my peeps out there are wine lovers like me, so you’ll most likely be going tasting sometime in the near future. That means that you absolutely, must, just gotta make this ASAP. You’ll thank me later!

Since I won’t be posting tomorrow, happy early St. Patrick’s Day to all of you! Stay safe and HAVE FUN!

Pull-Apart Beer Bread with Comte and Whole Grain Mustard | CaliGirl Cooking

Pull-Apart Beer Bread with Comte and Whole Grain Mustard

Yield: Makes one loaf

A delicious beer bread laced with comte cheese and whole grain mustard.

Ingredients

  • 1 packet active-dry yeast
  • 2 ¼ cups flour, divided
  • ¾ cup lukewarm beer (I used Firestone DBA)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup shredded Comte cheese
  • ¼ cup whole grain mustard

Instructions

  1. Combine yeast and 1 cup of sifted flour in a stand mixer. In a separate, small bowl, combine lukewarm beer, sugar and salt. Add to flour mixture. Turn mixer on low until ingredients are combined, then begin adding in remaining flour until a cohesive but slightly sticky dough forms (about 2 minutes.)
  2. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead lightly for about 2 more minutes. Spray a medium mixing bowl with cooking spray and add dough, tossing to coat. Cover with a dish towel and let rise in a warm place free from drafts for 1-2 hours or until doubled in size.
  3. Spray an 8.5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray. Remove dough from mixing bowl and transfer it to the loaf pan, shaping to fit. Cover and let rise another 1-2 hours.
  4. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove dough from loaf pan onto a lightly floured surface. Re-spray loaf pan with cooking spray. Slice dough into 8 pieces. One by one, take a slice of the dough and spread about half of a tablespoon of mustard on the side before sprinkling it with the shredded cheese. Gently tuck the slice back into the loaf pan. Continue this process until all slices have been covered and added to the loaf pan. {For the end pieces, keep the mustard/cheese combo on the inner side of the slice, as opposed to the side that will be against the loaf pan, so as to prevent sticking.) Sprinkle any remaining cheese on top of the loaf.
  5. Place loaf in preheated oven and bake for approximately 40 minutes. The cheese topping will be golden. Let cool in pan for 15-20 minutes then remove to finish cooling. If not eating right away, wrap loaf in plastic wrap and store in refrigerator (if eating in the next couple of days) or freezer (if not eating for a week or so.)

Notes

Wine Pairing Notes: This bread is soooo versatile, it will literally be a great juxtaposition to ANY wine, red or white. The only type of wine I may caution against is a sweet wine. Otherwise, just go for it! All the more reason to take it with you the next time you go wine tasting 🙂

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Pull-Apart Beer Bread with Comte and Whole Grain Mustard | CaliGirl Cooking

Catch ya on the flipside.

Beer-garita + Super Bowl Snacks Roundup!

It’s the final countdown…dun duh duh!

Beer-garita | CaliGirl Cooking

It’s my last post before Super Bowl Sunday so today I’m giving you all of the tools you need to have a banging Super Bowl Party with all of your friends.

We’ll start with our favorite (obvi) – the weekly cocktail recipe! Then we’ll move on to the just as important topic of food. Sound good? Thought so.

Beer-garita | CaliGirl Cooking

For this week’s cocktail, I wanted to create something fun yet not too lethal, because of course we have to stay alert enough to catch the halftime show…Lady Bey, you know it! I am also well aware of the fact that, even though my friends and I tend to throw back mimosas during our Sunday sports-viewing parties, the most-consumed beverage for this annual (and very American) celebration is a nice cold beer. So, because I am selfless, I decided to share a beer cocktail with you rather than a sparkling wine cocktail (although, if you are part of the cool, bubbly-drinking gang you could certainly whip up some of these or these and yes, you can sit with us :-P)

So, this Beer-garita. I’m sure you’ve all heard of these before. I was inspired to go this direction because of my lovely little variety pack from BeMixed (did you catch this super-cute Ginnie Pimm’s I posted last week?) Since I used the Ginger-Lime flavor for that drink, I decided it was time to give the Margarita flavor a go.

Beer-garita | CaliGirl Cooking

This is soooo easy it barely even requires a recipe, but since I love BeMixed and because I’m also including some fun Super Bowl recipes from my fellow bloggers in today’s post, I figured it was worth sharing.

The Beer-garita goes like this: Crushed ice in a glass, a little bit of tequila (because what’s a margarita without tequila?), half of a BeMixed Margarita bottle, some fresh-squeezed lime juice and our favorite Mexican beer (I highly recommend Corona or Pacifico, I speak from experience.) That’s it! So easy, right? This means less time playing bartender in the kitchen and more time watching the game. Sounds like a plan to me!

Beer-garita | CaliGirl Cooking

And in case you’re still looking for a few food items to go along with your Super Bowl Beer-garita, check out these fun recipes from some of my favorite bloggers:

BBQ Pulled Pork Pop Tarts from Spoon, Fork, Bacon – Genius! Why didn’t I think of this?

Cheesy Garlic Pull-Apart Bread from Two Red Bowls – All of the carbs. All of the cheese!

Homemade Sea Salt Soft Pretzels with Buffalo Cheddar Cheese Sauce from Half Baked Harvest – See above. You can tell the way to my heart.

Bacon-Goat Cheese Guacamole from How Sweet It Is (via Pioneer Woman) – You had me at avocado. (Oh, and bacon.)

Sticky Sesame Chicken Wings from Smitten Kitchen – Apparently even the least experienced wings-maker can pull these off. I’m into it.

Homemade French Onion Dip from Brown Eyed Baker – I love the cheater’s version of Lipton’s Onion Soup Mix and sour cream, so obvi I’m going to love this version even more.

Or…you could be the bestest and also make one or two of my own Super Bowl-friendly creations!

Bacon-Wrapped Potato Wedges with Cheddar & Mustard – Because where can you go wrong with bacon and cheese?

Italian 5-Layer Dip – Can’t stop, won’t stop.

Mango Salsa – Because you’ll need something fruity to go with Jessica’s guac (see above.)

Dad’s Sweet ‘n’ Spicy Chili – Base layer for all of the Beer-garitas! (Or mimosas.)

Pastrami Pizza – Because pizza and pastrami make everything better, even if your team is losing.

All right my friends, the recipe for the Beer-garita is below. Have fun, stay safe, and Super Bowl on!

Beer-garita | CaliGirl Cooking

Beer-garita

Yield: Makes one cocktail

A light and refreshing cocktail combining the flavors of Mexico's classics - Coronas and margaritas!

Ingredients

  • 1 ounce tequila
  • ½ of a BeMixed Margarita bottle
  • Juice of ½ a lime
  • 1 Corona

Instructions

  1. Pour all ingredients over crushed ice in a highboy glass and serve.
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Beer-garita | CaliGirl Cooking

Slurrrrrp.