February 24, 2017

Brew Pubs and Popovers

On a recent cloudy, gray winter day, I convinced my husband to take me to a popover pop-up shop set-up by The Popover Lady! His reaction was, "Like really? Do I have to go?" When I told him that it was being held at a brew pub, he got a little more excited. It was all going to happen at the Gentile Brewing Company in Beverly, MA. If you happen to be in the area, I highly recommend you check them out! So off we drove to get there earlier that the noon start. I figured this was going to be a VERY "pop"ular event! 
 Here is the General Manager, Emily, ready to serve us whatever we wanted. She's very smiley in the morning. Since we arrived before they were technically open, (okay I guess I was very excited for some yummy popovers!) she answered my million questions.
 Other early birds arrived. The kids were excited too!
 My husband made a beeline to the pubby manufacturing center while the poor Popover Lady was still getting her health department certificate. Guess we were a lot early, but they were nice to let us in!
 The event was a PERFECT combo since it was like man-heaven for my husband getting to look at all the brewing equipment. 
We recently bought some land further north in Massachusetts that has an old brewery on it, so his wheels got turning after seeing this setup. Who knows? Maybe someday there will be "BloomingBrews"? Ha ha :)
You have to be impressed with equipment that carries the name "Psycho Brew!"
 Back to The Popover Lady 'cause I was getting hungry! She apparently has gotten some well-deserved press. And her prices were more than reasonable!
The crowds were getting unruly! Okay, not yet, but it actually got really busy. These kids were eager to get this show rolling, like me!
 The Popover lady had all these different flavors that inspired me to make some when I got home - my stomach is growling just writing this post!
 And she also sold the yummiest blueberry pies!
 So after I bought some popovers to have with our beer - I mean, isn't THIS the breakfast of champions?- we ordered a flight of Gentile's finest beers.
 Who could resist of combo like this? We stayed and ate, and drank, and then ate and drank some more. 
And on their blackboard, they listed the other upcoming popups! Which reminds me, I can't WAIT to see what an "Angry Donut" looks like!
 They even had shirts to buy! I LOVE reasons to shop!
 Back at the bar, it started to fill up with all sorts...
 …even cute puppies were welcome!
 And walking in, were guys with wool hats and more beards than I could count - it was a hipstery kind of place with super friendly people. But as a mom who battles the hipster beard of my "preppy-hipster" son, I'll tell you that I started asking these nice guys (and their girlfriends) all about their beards and how long they were going to grow them. After all, I was on my third beer of the morning and the alcohol content was higher than a usual beer, so I was chatty! The guy in the photo in the red plaid shirt had just informed his fiancé that he wasn't going to shave until their June wedding! She was kind of horrified! My son better not do that to me someday! 
 After that, we decided it was probably best if we left, before I asked even more embarrassing questions, and to go home and make some of our own popovers.
I have to admit that I bought some yummy blueberry pies and some mini-popovers since I don't have any mini pans, but they are now on my must list to get!
It was a veritable popover smorgasbord and they are just so easy to make! Here's the recipe with a list of add-in suggestions you can choose if you want more zip to the already perfect treats.
All you need is some flour, eggs, milk, salt and butter. I goofed when I took this picture and omitted some things, but you'll get the idea when you read the recipe :)

Bloomingblog Popovers (makes 12 popovers):
Preheat oven to 450 degrees 
Put popover pan in oven to heat up for 2 minutes

While waiting for the pan to preheat, make the custard

3 eggs at room temperature (if you can)
1 1/2 cups of milk
1 1/2 cups of flour
3/4 tsp of salt
3 Tbs of unsalted butter
cooking spray
In a bowl, combine the flour and salt. 
Then gradually add in, to avoid lumpiness, the milk and eggs, beaten until they are lighter in color and a little frothy.
When your batter is combined, pour it into a mixer on medium speed, (or whisk like a crazy person if you don't have a mixture) for 3 minutes

Take the pan out of the oven and drop 1/2 Tbs pats of cold butter into each cup and then use the cooking spray to do a quick spray over the tops of the cups
Fill the cups halfway to the top and immediately put pan into the hot oven for 25 minutes. Decrease heat to 350 degrees for 15 more minutes

NO PEEKING 
While you wait, you can look at some pretty spring flowers. 
Spring's coming, I promise!
And you can see what I constantly daydream about - sigh


Serve at once and you'll be happy, but these can also be reheated. YUMMY!!

Popovers are also FANTASTIC as "bagels or buns" for lack of better words. How about this creation of scrambled eggs in popovers? SOOOO good!
Or even a mushroom cheddar cheeseburger? Those meat juices mixing with the slightly gooey center? I've got to stop. This is like food porn!
Ahhhh, and the last comfort food must-try is gooey mac and cheese. This is WAY more fun than a lettuce wrap, I can assure you!

Here's the recipe again without all the photos and with add-in suggestions:
Bloomingblog Popovers (makes 12 popovers):

Preheat oven to 450 degrees 
Put popover pan in oven to heat up for 2 minutes

While waiting for the pan to preheat, make the custard
3 eggs at room temperature (if you can)
1 1/2 cups of milk
1 1/2 cups of flour
3/4 tsp of salt
3 Tbs of unsalted butter
cooking spray
In a bowl, combine the flour and salt. 
Then gradually add in, to avoid lumpiness, the milk and eggs, beaten until they are lighter in color and a little frothy.
When your mixture is combined, pour it into a mixer on medium speed, (or whisk like a crazy person if you don't have a mixture) for 3 minutes
Take the pan out of the oven and drop 1/2 Tbs pats of butter into each cup and then use the cooking spray to do a quick spray over the tops of the cups
Fill the cups halfway to the top and immediately put pan into the hot oven for 25 minutes
Decrease heat to 350 degrees for 15 more minutes

Add-ins :)
In the custard mixture add:

Ham + Swiss - 1/2 grated Swiss (or any cheese you like) and 1/2 cup chopped ham

Cinnamon + Sugar - 1/4 tsp cinnamon, pinch of nutmeg, 2 tsp vanilla, and on top of batter sprinkle combined 1 Tbs sugar and 1 Tbs of cinnamon over tops

Carmelized Onion - finely chop 1/2 cup of sweet onions and sauté in pan with butter until caramelized and slightly brown and then add to batter

Cheers!

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