Following our recent recipes for Chocolate Cheesecake Stout Pops and a Chocolate Stout Float, we have stout for breakfast (French toast) and stout for dessert (a rich chocolate cake).
RECIPE #1: STUFFED FRENCH TOAST WITH STOUT CUSTARD & BOURBON CREAM CHEESE FILLING
Use your favorite breakfast stout custard batter and stuffed with cream cheese frosting spiked with bourbon.
What is breakfast stout?
Breakfast stout is the name given to a creamy stout with a coffee aroma, that’s brewed with coffee, bitter chocolate and oat flakes. Coffee-infused beers have been made by American craft brewers since the early 1990s, but this was a leap forward.
The first breakfast beer was conceived by Dave Engbers of Founders Brewing Co. in Grand Rapids, Michigan (along with a bourbon-barrel aged Kentucky Breakfast Stout). It debuted in 2003, made in the style of American Double/Imperial Stout.
While other craft brewers followed suit with breakfast stouts and porters, the original remains one of the more popular breakfast stouts on the market. If it’s pricier than other beers, it’s because it the coffee-handling equipment and chocolate equipment add multiple steps to the brewing process [source].
The bottle label features a young, towhead boy with a napkin around his neck, lapping up a bowl of cereal (photo #3). Some states, including the brewery’s home, Michigan, forced the brewery to eliminate the child on the grounds that it encouraged young people to drink. Really, Michigan? Has the legislature nothing more important to legislate?
A second label was created for Michigan showing only a cereal bowl on a table. You can see the revised, tongue-in-cheek label here.
Other brands subsequently introduced breakfast beers, including Dogfish Head Beer For Breakfast Stout, Funky Buddha Maple Bacon Coffee Porter, Mikkeller’s Beer Geek Breakfast, One Barrel Brewing Company’s Breakfast Beer Imperial Coffee Stout, 21st Amendment Brewery’s Toaster Pastry India Red Ale, Uiltje Brewing Company’s Full English Breakfast and Wicked Weed’s Barrel Aged French Toast Imperial Stout.
Ready for breakfast? Prep time for the French toast is 30 minutes. If you can’t find breakfast stout, you can substitute chocolate stout, double stout or milk stout.
Ingredients For 4 Servings
For The Egg Batter
For a pumpkin variation, add 2 tablespoons pumpkin purée and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon; omit the vanilla extract.
For The Bourbon Cream Cheese Filling
1. MAKE the cream cheese filling. Beat the cream cheese, butter and salt in a stand mixer on medium speed until smooth. Add the bourbon and mix until well combined. Reduce the speed to low; add the powdered sugar and mix until fully incorporated. If the mixture feels a bit loose or if a sweeter filling is desired, add an additional tablespoon of powdered sugar, at bit at a time until a spreadable frosting consistency is reached.
If preparing the filling in advance, or if you have leftovers, cover with plastic wrap and store in the fridge for up to a week.
2. PREHEAT the oven to 200°F and make the French toast. Create a pocket in each slice of bread by using a paring knife to cut horizontally into the bottom or side crust. Carefully fill each pocket with 2 tablespoons or so of cream cheese filling. You can use a pastry bag or a Ziploc bag with the corner cut off, but a butter knife also works well.
3. THOROUGHLY whisk together all the batter ingredients in a baking dish or pie pan. Place each slice in the egg batter, allowing it to soak for 10 seconds per side.
4. MELT 2 tablespoons of butter in a large, heavy bottomed skillet over medium heat. Working in batches, place the challah slices into the skillet to brown. Cook 4 to 5 minutes per side, adjusting the heat as needed, until golden brown.
5. TRANSFER to a baking sheet and place the finished slices in the oven to keep warm while cooking the remaining slices. Serve warm, topped with maple syrup and berries, alongside a glass of breakfast stout.
RECIPE #2: CHOCOLATE STOUT CAKE
The flavor of this cake is multi-dimensional: The presence of the stout gives it a much more interesting finish. The hops from the beer act as a counterpoint to the sugar in the cake. We used a chocolate stout for an extra hint of chocolate.
It’s an incredibly moist cake, too, and its rich, dark color comes mostly from the beer.
This recipe makes two tall, imposing layers; be sure your 9″ cake pans are at least 2″ tall, or use 10″ pans if you have them. For a smaller cake, see the last tip below.
Prep time is 25 to 35 minutes, bake time is 45 to 50 minutes.
1. PREHEAT the oven to 350°F. Grease and flour three 8″ or two 9″ cake pans, and line them with parchment paper circles. Be sure your 9″ pans are at least 2″ deep.
2. MAKE the cake: Place the stout and butter in a large, heavy saucepan, and heat until the butter melts. Remove the pan from the heat, and add the cocoa powder. Whisk until the mixture is smooth. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
3. WHISK together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl; set aside. In a large mixing bowl, beat together the eggs and sour cream. Add the stout-cocoa mixture, mixing to combine. Add the flour mixture and mix together at slow speed. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl, and mix again for 1 minute.
4. DIVIDE the batter equally among the prepared pans. Bake the layers for 35 minutes for 8″ pans, or 45 to 50 minutes for 9″ pans, until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove the cakes from the oven and cool on a rack for 10 minutes before turning the cakes out of their pans and returning to the rack to finish cooling completely before frosting.
5. MAKE the frosting: Place the chopped chocolate in a large heatproof bowl. Bring the cream to a simmer in a heavy, medium-sized saucepan. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and stir until the mixture is completely smooth. Stir in the vanilla. Refrigerate until the icing is spreadable, stirring occasionally, about 2 hours.
6. ASSEMBLE: Trim one cake layer to have a flat top, if necessary (otherwise the layer will crack when you place it upside down on your cake plate). Line the edges of a serving plate with parchment or waxed paper to keep it clean, and then place the layer upside down on top. Spread 2/3 cup of the icing over just the top of the layer. Top with another cake layer, top side down, and repeat the process. If you baked three layers, add that one also. Use the remaining frosting to cover the top and sides of the cake. Remove the parchment or waxed paper.