I've accumulated quite a collection of Christmas-themed beers. Luckily there are twelve days of Christmas so I have a little time to attempt to sample them all. However, I felt a need to try to drink all the beers with Santa Claus on the label before Christmas Day was over. At this I failed.
The other night I had the Santa's Private Reserve from Rogue Ales. This, I imagine, is what Santa would brew if he were a bitter old man, kind of like the Walter Matthau character in Grumpy Old Men. While I enjoy the depiction of Santa as a pirate on the label this one was a bit too bitter for me to fully enjoy.
And what better to accompany bitter beer than tikka masala with shrimp? Probably a lot of things but we had shrimp, cauliflower, potato, onion, and peas to use up before we left town so this was the logical choice for dinner.
The night before leaving for Rhode Island Jen made her traditional clam corn casserole which was delightful. I also made a salad with kale, leftover fig tahini dressing, and crispy onions.
We arrived home today just as the snow was beginning to accumulate. In Rhode Island we celebrated the first of three Christmases. Tonight we celebrated the second round and we had time to open presents before sitting down enjoy Jen's traditional Christmas foods. December is a pretty boss month for me in that I have to do very little cooking though it's mostly because I'm working too much to have time to do it.
Jen made the traditional tourtière for tonight's dinner which we enjoyed with some baked beans and scalloped potatoes.
Along with theses French Canadian delights I had another in my Santa/Christmas beer collection. This time it was the Christmas Ale by Gritty's in Portland, Maine. I found this Santa had a much more pleasant demeanor than the bitter old coot from Rogue. He was more like Ann Margaret in Grumpy Old Men.
To conclude the meal we had a plate of holiday desserts. The persimmon, while adding lovely color, was unfortunately not ripe. It's been on our counter for two weeks and even though it still didn't feel ripe I figured that it must be some mistake so I cut it up anyway. That was a huge mistake. If you've ever tasted an unripened persimmon you will know of what I speak. If you haven't then just imagine what it would be like if you took one of those silica gel packets you often find in new shoes and stirred it up with some powdered cinnamon and sawdust and tried to eat it.
Also on the platter were fruitcake recipes from two different British Commonwealth nations: Canada and Antigua. The recipes were quite different and both liberally soaked in brandy and rum respectively.
Sadly we have no eggnog to enjoy which would have also been nice to soak in rum or brandy. Alas, the snow prevented me from venturing out to procure any so instead we stayed inside and Jen was a very good sport about watching a huge amount of Dragon Ball Z and allowing me to test out the new flash for my camera.
All-in-all the first 66% of Christmas this year has been pretty top notch. I look forward to round three with great anticipation.