We’re more than ready to bid winter a hearty farewell. But as glass-half-full types, we like to see the good side of the season. For us, that means filling our beer glasses halfway (or all the way!) with tasty winter warmers, Christmas ales, and our favorite: coffee stouts. Pretty soon, spring seasonals will start to take place of winter brews on the shelves, so we thought we’d take this opportunity to share one of our favorite beer dessert recipes before it’s too late.
Terrapin Beer Company’s Wake ‘N’ Bake coffee oatmeal stout gets our vote for the best coffee stout around. As viscous as motor oil and as robust as the best cup of coffee, this beer has the power to quickly improve any cold winter day. It also happens to go really well in desserts — like the Wake ‘n’ Bake Chocolate-Coconut Dessert Bars from The American Craft Beer Cookbook by John Holl.
But don’t be fooled by the name: There’s no baking required.
The recipe utilizes coffee stout in each of the three layers. The bottom layer mixes it with graham crackers, coconut and chocolate; the middle layer with creamed butter and powdered sugar; and the top layer with silky dark chocolate and just a hint of sea salt. But don’t be fooled by the name: there is no baking required!
And if you can’t find Terrapin Wake ‘N’ Bake in your area, you can substitute Founder’s Breakfast Stout, Schlafly Coffee Stout, or your favorite coffee stout.
Wake ‘n’ Bake Dessert Bars
1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
⅓ cup plus 2 tablespoons Terrapin Wake ‘N’ Bake Stout
½ cup (1 stick) butter
¼ heaping cup unsweetened cocoa powder
¼ cup sugar
1 egg, well-beaten
½ cup walnuts
In a small bowl, combine the the coconut and 2 tablespoons of beer.
Spin the graham crackers and and walnuts in a food processor until fine.
In a double-boiler (it’s easier than it sounds!), stir the butter, cocoa powder, sugar, and ⅓ cup of beer until incorporated. Remove from heat and stir in the egg until well combined. Then add the graham cracker mix and the coconut mix.
4. Line an 8 x8 pan with parchment paper (this will make removing the bars super easy) and press the bottom layer into the pan. Place in the refrigerator to cool.
2 cups powdered sugar
½ cup (1 stick) butter
2 tablespoons cornstarch
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons Terrapin Wake ‘N Bake Stout
Using an electric mixer or the paddle attachment on a stand mixer, paddle the butter, powdered sugar, beer, cornstarch, and vanilla on a low speed until incorporated. Spread evenly over the first layer and return the pan to the fridge.
1 bar of 73% cacao (ours was 85 grams), chopped or crumbled
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons beer (If you don’t know what kind by now, we fear for you soul.)
Melt the chocolate in the double boiler, then add the butter and beer. Mix well, and pour over the top. Sprinkle with sea salt and place in the refrigerator to cool for at least one hour or overnight.
When they are fully chilled, simply pull the bars out with the parchment paper and slice. Serve with Terrapin Wake ‘N’ Bake Stout. If you are truly a made man, you’ll have this for breakfast.
Recipe adapted from: The American Craft Beer Cookbook: 155 Recipes From Your Favorite Brewpubs & Breweries” by John Holl (Storey, 2013)