This is a story about beer.
A little over a week ago, early in the morning, my buzzer rang. Now, as a food blogger, it’s pretty normal for me to get deliveries. Sometimes I know they are coming, sometimes I don’t. This particular morning I was not expecting a delivery, so I was curious to see what was coming around the corner.
There was the sound of clanking glass… and my eyes got really, really wide when I saw the delivery man.
He was carrying 2 huge cases of beer.
My friend Raj has recently been crafting some Instagram posts for the nice folks at Stanley Park Brewing, and last month asked if I could come along to be a “beer hand model.” One of the things I love about my life and work is that it allows me the flexibility to say yes to stuff like that, and so of course I did. We had a blast, and got some quality hang out time to boot, which is rare for the two of us in real life.
It was something I did for a friend, but it turns out, I got paid in beer. it could be worse, right? Much, much worse.
I stared at those cases of beer in my kitchen and thought, yeah, I could hoard them and drink them all myself. Or I could share the wealth. So I got on Facebook and invited some people over.
There are so many good things going on in my life right now, I feel so grateful and happy. There’s much to celebrate, including the beginning of summer, my favourite time of the year.
So, Sunday night, a group of my friends gathered on the roof of my building and helped me drink beer. Because those are the kinds of friends I have–self-sacrificing and unselfish. 😉
I should say for the record that I’m not generally a huge beer drinker. I tend towards wine or cocktails or cider. But the summer ale, SunSetter, from Stanely Park Brewing is very tasty and an incredibly easy summer-lovin’ beer. It has overtones of peaches and is just alltogether refreshing and light. It will have a place in my fridge this summer. Everyone at the party loved it, as well.
Yes–back to the party. It’s irresponsible to just serve beer at a party, right? You need to provide your guests with food as well. I decided to make beer steamed mussels. This is partly because every time I go to Costco I want to buy mussels. They are only $12 for 2 giant containers, but I can’t eat that many by myself, so having some people over to help me eat them was perfect. And steaming them in beer?? Even more perfect.
These were amazing. I can’t wait to make them again. So simple and easy, but the mussels are juicy and plump and you will want lots of toast to sop up the juices. I also think they tasted better because we cooked and ate them outdoors.
Happy Summer, everyone! I hope my beer-themed summer kickoff party inspires you to do something similar. Let’s celebrate!
Beer Steamed Mussels
- 2 x 2.72kg of mussels
- 1 onion, sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp butter
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 bottles SunSetter Summer Ale (or some other light beer–a wheat beer or a hefeweizen would be perfect)
- fresh herbs to finish: chives or green onions or flat leaf parsley, chopped roughly
- Wash the mussels well, and pick through them, discarding any that are open or broken.
- In a very large pot, melt the butter and olive oil over medium heat, and then add the onions. Cook for about 5 minutes, or until softened. Add the garlic and stir well.
- Add the beer and bring the temperature up to the boil.
- Now add in all the mussels. Put the lid on and allow to steam for about 10 minutes.
- You’ll know the mussels are done when they are open.
- Sprinkle with fresh herbs, and serve in bowls with crusty bread.
A very special thank-you to Stanley Park Brewing for supplying my party with awesome beer!