“Beer and cookies”—if there’s any more festive phrase out there, we’re not aware of it. Possessed by the spirit of celebration, we tapped Badger Hill Brewing co-founder Britt Krekelberg to combine holiday baked goods and local beer.
Lo and behold: She had not one thought, but three. Her Chocolate Stout Crunch cookies use Badger Hill beer in the cookies, in the icing, and—this is where things get profound—in the beer-infused finishing salt that gives these treats a kiss of texture and salty contrast. The booze in these rich, brownie-like delights cooks off, so feel free to share hither and yon. We found them good enough that the sharing part was painful, but, you know—’tis the season and all that.
Chocolate Stout Crunch Cookies
Makes 2 dozen cookies
¾ c. flour
¼ c. cocoa powder
½ c. sugar
½ tsp. sea salt
4 oz. semi-sweet chocolate
4 Tbsp. butter
½ c. Badger Hill Foundation Stout
½ tsp. vanilla
â…“ c. chocolate chips
3 Tbsp. raw cocoa nibs
¼ c. Badger Hill Foundation Stout
1 c. powdered sugar
2 Tbsp. sea salt (optionally, use beer salt; see recipe online)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk together flour, cocoa powder, sugar, and salt in medium bowl. Set aside.
2. Melt chocolate and butter in double boiler over medium heat or in microwave in 30-second bursts. Mix well and remove from heat. Add stout, vanilla, and egg to chocolate-butter mixture. Continue to mix well.
3. Combine wet with dry ingredients until well-blended. Fold in chocolate chips and cocoa nibs. Let sit for 5 minutes then drop by tablespoons on greased or parchment-lined cookie sheet.
4. Bake 10 minutes. Transfer cookies to cooling rack set over napkins or paper towels to catch icing drips.
5. For topping, heat and reduce stout in small pot over medium-high heat 10 minutes. Add powdered sugar and mix well.
6. Drizzle topping on cooled cookies and immediately sprinkle salt on top.
BEHIND THE SCENES
Badger Hill MSB (Minnesota Special Bitter) Sea Salt
Recipe by Britt Krekelberg, Badger Hill Brewery
2 c. Badger Hill MSB (Minnesota Special Bitter) beer
1 c. coarse sea salt
In pot, bring beer to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until liquid is reduced to a syrup consistency. Once the reduction starts to thicken, keep an eye on it, as it can burn quickly—estimate 15 to 20 minutes to reduce.
Once reduced, immediately add salt and stir until the salt has completely absorbed the beer and has changed color. Pour onto parchment-paper-lined baking sheet and bake at 175 degrees or lower for 2 hours, stirring frequently. Once dry, store in airtight container.