Combining strawberries with a light strawberry beer, olive oil, and apple cider vinegar makes Strawberry Sky Salad Dressing a light dressing with a great depth of flavor.
I was recently invited to a summer evening of fabulous food and beer at Breckenridge Brewery in Littleton, CO celebrating their new Strawberry Sky Beer. We had an amazing meal with a variety of beers served to complement the courses and of course I had to make something of my own with the package of beers we were sent home with.
As most of my friends know, I’m not really a beer drinker for the most part, but I love dinners at BB where their Executive Chef, the talented Chef Nate Gravina, brings forth his best efforts and pairs their creative food dishes with the perfect beer.
Strawberry Sky is available year-round, offering sweet strawberry notes behind Huell Melon hops to create a complexity that bursts with fresh fruit flavors of strawberry, and honeydew. Available nationwide, Strawberry Sky started selling in 4 and 6-pack cans year round starting this past July.
Breck’s president and head brewer Todd Usry credits Colorado’s famously striking red and pink sunsets as the inspiration behind Strawberry Sky. Usry said his brewers will tell you there’s no better time to drink this beer than at golden hour and it was timed perfectly. A gorgeous Colorado evening (even with a short lived hailstorm), good food, friends, and this perfect beer were meant to be.
Really out of this world food too; prepared for our party but sadly not on their menu. Our starter was this beautiful Strawberry RockFish Ceviche with Basil “Caviar,” Grilled Avocado, and Spent Grain Tortilla Chips. It was fun to watch the chef prepare the basil caviar and it added such a beautiful finish to a fabulous dish.
The Strawberry Rockfish Ceviche was paired with Breckenridge Brewery Agave Wheat Beer.
If they were menu offerings I would have already been back for this Crab Cheese Relleno with Purple Potato Root Mash, Grilled White Asparagus, Smoked Chipotle Creme, and a Cherry Jawsome Gastrique. Let me repeat that…Crab + Cheese + Relleno. Absolutely divine. Adriana’s in Franktown, CO needs to up their game; I’ve always loved their Chile Rellenos but sadly they now suffer by comparison.
The Chile Relleno entrée was paired with Strawberry Sky Beer.
The dessert we were served was a work of art. A delightful combination of a childhood treat met full on by today’s trend of food preparation using liquid nitrogen. We were all feeling stuffed by the time dessert was served but could not resist a plate of Peanut Butter Snow Balls filled with a jam made from the Strawberry Sky Beer, topped with frozen peanut butter crumbles and accompanied by Shattered Strawberries (we got to watch the chef make these with liquid nitrogen). The dessert was beautifully complemented with a White Chocolate Fan with Raspberry Cocoa Butter. Kudos to their pastry chef too!
True confession? One of the servers came to the end of the table where four of us were finishing up our dessert, all lamenting to her how wonderful it was and how full we were. She shared with us that there were four desserts left, would we each care to have another? Amazing how quickly we got over being full, there was a combined chorus of YES PLEASE!
Dessert was paired with Breckenridge Brewery Nitro Irish Stout.
My inspiration for this post today were the perfectly positioned droplets of sauce on the right in that beautiful dessert. A combination of strawberries, sugar, and Strawberry Sky beer, I decided to make that simple combination my starting point for a fruity salad dressing. I combined strawberries, sugar, and a full can of Strawberry Sky beer and cooked it down until slightly thickened. The dressing was simply a mixture of the sauce with some honey, apple cider vinegar, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Easy, delicious and perfect on a plate of lettuce, berries, toasted almonds, and cheese.
Not just for salad, try pouring the dressing over a block of cream cheese and serve with crackers for a simple appetizer. Eliminate the olive oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper and add some to your maple syrup for a fantastic pancake or waffle topper, ice cream too! Or do what I have done…take a big bite with a spoon…YUMMY!
In case you’re wondering if this dressing tastes like beer, the answer is no. The addition of the beer certainly raises the flavor profile and it’s a much deeper, richer flavor than the same ingredients without it. Sure you can make it without the beverage but why would you want to? Strawberry Sky beer is available nationwide so NO excuses! 🙂
I’ve only created one other recipe with beer from Breckenridge Brewery but it’s worth sharing. I went to a launch for their Chocolate Orange Stout a couple of years ago and made this Chocolate Orange Stout Cake with it. Still a favorite; if this beer is not available, a nice dark stout will do!
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PIN ‘Strawberry Sky Salad Dressing’
Strawberry Sky Salad Dressing
- 16 ounces fresh strawberries hulled and sliced
- 1-12 oz can Strawberry Sky Beer
- ¼ cup sugar
- 2 Tbsp honey
- 3 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
- 4 Tbsp Olive Oil
- ¼ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp ground black pepper
- Combine sliced strawberries, beer, and sugar in a medium saucepan. Heat until simmering and simmer for about 10 minutes on medium low heat until slightly thickened. Remove from heat and blend ingredients. Cool to room temperature.
- Add honey, apple cider vinegar, salt and pepper and blend.
- Add olive oil slowing and whisk to blend. Pour into container and chill until ready to serve.