Wookiee Monster

There’s less than a month to go until the Force will supposedly awaken. And here I am baking cookies.

Wookiee cookies to be exact. With oats, coconut, toffee bits and a hint of chocolate. The toffee bits will melt a bit in the oven and make these cookies a little…wait for it…chewy.

Honestly, I don’t have a lot to say about beer this week. This whole Star Wars thing has occupied most of my attention. However, I did stumble upon this little gem last time I was at my favorite beer haunt.

wells-sticky-toffee-pudding-ale-63For this recipe I used Wells Sticky Toffee Pudding Ale. This isn’t the first oddball beer flavor for the Charles Wells brewing family – this is the same brewery that put out the Banana Bread beer among others. This one comes very close to conjuring up an accurate likeness of the British dessert: rich caramel malt tones and a hint of molasses-like sweetness.

Can’t find the aforementioned ale? An English Brown Ale (e.g. Newcastle or Naramata Nut Brown) or a sweet oak-aged brew would do just fine.

Toffee Ale Wookiee Cookies

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The wild cookie, in its natural environment.

For the cookies:
3/4 cup unsalted butter

3/4 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs

1/4 cup brown ale

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 tbsp cocoa powder

1 cup large flake rolled oats

1 cup quick-cooking oats

1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut

1 cup flour

1/2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. baking soda

1 cup toffee bits

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F (325°F in a convection oven).
  2. Cream butter and sugar.
  3. Add eggs and vanilla to butter mixture and beat until smooth.
  4. Gradually stir in cocoa, oats and coconut to butter mixture.
  5. In a separate bowl, combine flour, salt, and baking soda.
  6. Add flour mixture to butter mixture gradually, stirring well.
  7. Add toffee bits to dough and fold to combine.
  8. Chill dough for at least one hour and up to 24 hours. The more time the dough has to rest, the more moisture the oats will absorb and the less it will spread out on the cookie sheet.
  9. Scoop dough with a teaspoon and form into balls, pressing down lightly onto nonstick or greased baking sheet.
  10. Bake for 12-14 minutes or until edges are lightly browned.
  11. Place on wire rack to cool.

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Wookiee Cookie Icing

Chocolate:
1 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar

2 tbsp. dark cocoa powder

3 tsp. milk

3 tbsp. corn syrup

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Vanilla:

1 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar

3 tsp. milk

2 tbsp. corn syrup

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

  1. Stir confectioner’s sugar, cocoa and milk together.
  2. Add corn syrup and combine until smooth. If icing is too thick to put in an icing bag, add a bit more corn syrup.
  3. Pour icing into piping bag fitted with a small round tip.

To Decorate:

  1. With the chocolate icing, draw two lines across the cookie’s “chest” to make the outline of the ammo belt.
  2. Fill in this line with more of the chocolate icing and smooth over the top.
  3. Use the vanilla icing to make those cute little snaggle-teeth and eyes. Add a little bit of food coloring for the eyes if you don’t want your wookiees to look possessed.
  4. Draw lines or add silverettes to the ammo belt to make your wookiee look more vicious.
  5. If you’re seriously having trouble with this and need more detailed instructions, Ro from Nerdy Nummies has an excellent tutorial on her Youtube channel using melted chocolate.
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Beer Wars – The Schwarz Awakens

Christmas is coming early this year, for myself and millions of other Star Wars fans. With the advent of the Force Awakens on the horizon, it’s also time to re-watch all the movies.

If you’re like me, you’ll probably still watch the prequels, in spite of their shortcomings. But in order to survive such an ordeal, you’re going to need some beer. Use the following suggestions to guide your pairings. Personally I recommend watching the original trilogy first – these you do actually want to remember. The others…not so much.

Episode IV. A New Hope

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…

I recommend watching this movie with an ice cold pilsner or a blonde lager. Or anything that resembles the first beer you ever drank.

If your prior drink of choice was the raspberry-flavored vodka you smuggled into the movie theatre in soda bottles, your first taste of beer was a significant milestone in terms of drinking habits. For me, this is that little green can with the bunnies on it. It tastes good in a reminiscent way. But now that you’re a big kid, you know that there’s a world of other possibilities.

Episode V. The Empire Strikes Back

“I find your lack of faith disturbing.” – Darth Vader

Episode V with it’s adventure and unexpected plot twists is best paired with a sweet and sophisticated dubbel. Try one of the many from Belgium’s Trappist Breweries – sure to be a crowd pleaser.

Episode V is regarded by many as the best movie of the six. Likewise Westvleteren holds a similar position in the beer world, if you can get your hands on a bottle. Even your less beer-savvy friends will find something they like about it.


Episode VI. Return of the Jedi

Darth Sidious in his younger days? The resemblance is uncanny.

“Only at the end do you realize the power of the Dark Side.” – Emporer Palpatine

Find thee a British bitter ale, like Hobgoblin from Wychwood Brewery. Something with a rich malty sweetness that ties it all together and then leaves you with a bittersweet taste in your mouth.

Why? Because the original trilogy is now over, and you’re going to have to wait 16 years for another Star Wars movie.


Episode I. The Phantom Menace

“It’s a trap!” – Admiral Ackbar

A character with minimal spoken lines and a double-sided lightsaber was the best part of this movie.

Episode I is like a cheap vacation in Mexico. You’re really REALLY excited for it. But as soon as you step off the plane, you realize it’s hurricane season. And you still have a three hour bus-ride to the resort.

To drown your disappointment, you buy a beer from the first beer-cart you see. Corona. Ick.

Sure, it looks appetizing enough until you realize it’s been left in a half-empty ice bucket for eight hours. Now it’s Luke-warm (see what I did there) and the clear bottle has let in enough light to make it kind of skunky-tasting. The good news? You can cover that taste up with some lime juice. And you can drink lots of it. The more you drink, the less noticeable is the taste of utter disappointment…and the less you’ll remember this miserable excuse for a movie.

Episode II. Attack of the Clones

“A jedi craves not these things.” – Yoda

“I don’t like sand. It’s coarse and rough and irritating and it gets everywhere.” Is this supposed to be romantic?

If this movie were an alcoholic beverage, it would be a cooler. Or some saccharin over-sweetened fruity alco-pop garbage like Mango Mongozo.

Sure there’s some alcohol in there and a handful of relatively cool battle scenes. And maybe it was a classy lambic-style brew to begin with – they might have thrown in an interesting back-story. But it isn’t beer any longer. Now it’s an over-produced love story between Whine-ikin’s raging hormones and whatever teenager has the stomach to drink this swill.

And if you drink too much of it, the hangover will knock you into the next year.

What are we talking about anymore? Oh yeah. Star Wars.


Episode III. Revenge of the Sith

“You do have your moments. Not many, but you have them.” – Princess Leia

Finalize the final moments of this sad trilogy with a Double IPA, or better yet a triple. Personally, I think Stone something from Stone Brewing Company would suit the mood. Ruination IPA 2.0 or the RuinTen Triple IPA would do the trick – high aclohol and heavy hop flavour.


The sheer force of the hops in this beverage will torch your tastebuds and cleanse your palate of all the uncomfortable flavours of the past decade. And maybe offer some semblance of redemption for the last 4 ½+ hours you wasted watching Episodes I and II. You might also be saying “I’ll never drink that again.” But deep down, you know that’s a lie.

Now go watch the original trilogy another five times.

Episode VII.

“There is another…” –  Yoda

Words cannot adequately describe my excitement.

Some new-age craft beer with a new ingredient you’ve never tried before. Coffee. Chamomile. Pizza. Whatever. You’re a little excited, a little terrified. You don’t know what to expect. But, no matter how bad it is, it’s STILL going to be better than episodes I through III.

I was pleasantly surprised by this Stargazer Chamomile Wheat from Canuck Empire. Let’s hope, for the sake of the franchise, that the movie is equally as satisfying.

Got opinions? Agree/disagree with my beer-nalysis of Star Wars? Comment below, and tell me what you”ll be drinking for your marathon.