This past week, the weather here in Maryland has felt especially like fall; we’ve been able to keep the windows open, and the leaves are starting to change color! To celebrate the beginning of fall and all things pumpkin, I’ve got a great pumpkin recipe for you featuring DuClaw Brewing Company’s 62 Imperial Pumpkin Ale! Whether you’re a beer lover or not, you’re going to love this pumpkin roll.
DuClaw Brewing Company is very local to us at our new place – their original brewpub was located in Bel Air, MD, but they quickly outgrew their original facilities and relocated to a larger brewing facility in Rosedale, MD. From selling craft beer through his dorm room window to a 60,000 square foot facility, founder Dave Benfield has a come a long way, having released more than 65 craft brews alongside brewmaster, Jim Wagner. They still have several locations of brewpubs throughout the area in Arundel Mills, Bel Air, Bowie, and the BWI Airport.
Their company motto is “craft be cherished, rules be damned,” and that motto is so evident in their unique brews! My friend, Randy, and I stopped by their brewpub in Bel Air for lunch to sample all of the brews they have on tap currently – 21 in total – and I was amazed at all the amazing flavors they were able to incorporate into their beers. The names alone are going to make you want to try them all – from Sweet Baby Jesus, a chocolate peanut butter porter, Dirty Little Freak, a coconut caramel chocolate brown ale, to Bare Ass Blonde, a classic blonde ale. Those three are a few of their most popular brews, and they also happen to be my very favorites of what I’ve tried. Check out my Instagram account for some highlights from our beer sampling adventure!
DuClaw has two pumpkin beers, which they were kind enough to send me to try and have some fun baking with. They are the 31 Pumpkin Spiced Lager and the 62 Imperial Pumpkin Ale. Between the two, I enjoyed the 31 the most for drinking, but I have to say, the 62 is definitely the better one for recipe making with its robust hoppy flavor!
Let me give you the quick and dirty about both of these beers before I tell you what I thought of them.
31 Pumpkin Spiced Lager
Style: Pumpkin Spice Lager
Color: Dark Amber
Hop Variety: Goldings
Grains: Munich, Cara Aroma, Wheat Malts
Availability: Seasonally in 12 oz. bottles at select liquor stores, and on tap at select bars/restaurants.
62 Imperial Pumpkin Ale
Style: Imperial Pumpkin Ale
Color: Dark Brown/Reddish
Hop Variety: Galena
Grains: Munich, CaraRed and CaraAroma along with Flaked Oats
Availability: Available in 12oz bottles, while supplies last.
Click through here to find DuClaw beers near you: where to buy. To give you an idea, DuClaw distributes throughout Maryland, DC, New Jersey, Delaware, Virginia, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, West Virginia, and Cleveland, Ohio. Be sure to like DuClaw on Facebook or follow them on Twitter!
So now, my thoughts on these beers. Let me preface my opinion with the fact that I have just recently gotten a little more into trying new beers… Before, I just absolutely hated it and couldn’t grasp drinking something that tasted like liquid bread to me. 😉 My beer tastes have definitely matured since then, and I have to say, I enjoyed both of these.
As I mentioned before, the 31 Pumpkin Spiced Lager was my favorite, which makes sense, since DuClaw describes it as the “grown-up version of the pumpkin spice latte.” I have to agree. It’s smooth, with cinnamon and nutmeg, and sweet pumpkin flavor – an easy one to drink anytime during the fall.
With the 62 Imperial Pumpkin Ale, get ready for loads of hop. DuClaw’s description of this one, “not your grandma’s pumpkin beer, this is one of our most hop-loaded beers to date” almost scared me away. When I saw the phrase, “Hop Gun,” I was just about ready to tell Alex to just try it and tell me what he thought, cause there was no way I’d be able to appreciate something with that much hop going on. I decided to forget about what I think about hoppy beers and just try this as I played around in the kitchen with this pumpkin roll recipe. I will admit, when I first tried it, the harsh hop flavor was a little much for my palate, but as I continued drinking it, I was able to taste the spices – cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg – and really appreciate the different flavors. Not one I think I would want all the time, especially with it’s higher ABV at 8.2%, but it’s definitely one I can appreciate as a seasonal beer – you’ll enjoy this one if you’re into more intense beers.
Now, what you probably want to hear about the most… this pumpkin roll! This is a classic pumpkin roll recipe made even better with the 62 Imperial Pumpkin Ale. The beer is in both the cake part of the roll and the filling, and boy can you taste it! Between the two beers, the 62 is definitely better suited to this pumpkin roll since it has the more pronounced flavors that can really stand on their own next to the cloying sweetness of the cream cheese frosting in the pumpkin roll filling. A lot of the time, I end up thinking pumpkin rolls are too sweet, but adding in the beer made it just perfect for me.
I added a little extra cinnamon in both the cake and filling to bring out more of the beer’s spice flavor, and I’m so happy with how this turned out. Because the sponge-cake type of cake pumpkin rolls are made out of, I had to be especially careful with how much beer I incorporated into the cake batter itself, as it could easily become too moist, which would make it a lot harder to roll up, being too moist and sticking to everything. The same can be said in the other direction with adding too much flour to compensate for the extra liquid from the beer, which could make the roll crack a lot more easily. I found a happy medium by decreasing the pumpkin just slightly and adding a little more flour.
This pumpkin ale pumpkin roll is a great way to mix up a classic dessert and wow your guests with the extra spice flavor from the beer. I think this would be a fun thing to serve up for Thanksgiving and have your guests try to guess what’s different about it!
Do you like pumpkin beer? Have you ever made a recipe with pumpkin beer?
- 1 cup white whole wheat flour
- 3/4 tsp baking powder
- 3/4 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ginger
- 1/4 tsp cloves
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 3 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
- 1/2 tsp liquid stevia (or 1/2 cup regular sugar)
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 1/3 cup DuClaw Imperial Pumpkin Ale
- powdered sugar, for sprinkling
- 6 Tbsp butter, softened
- 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- 1/2 tsp liquid stevia (or another 1/2 cup powdered sugar)
- 4 Tbsp DuClaw Imperial Pumpkin Ale
Preheat the oven to 375ºF, and line a 15 by 10-inch jelly roll pan with parchment paper, and spray the paper with cooking spray. Place a thin cotton towel on the counter, and sprinkle generously with powdered sugar (about 1/4 cup).
In a medium bowl, stir the flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices, and salt together, and set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, whisk the eggs, sugar, stevia extract (if using), and vanilla extract together, until thickened. Add the pumpkin and beer, mixing until well combined. Slowly add in the flour mixture, stirring until just incorporated.
Spread the batter evenly into the prepared jelly roll pan, and bake at 375ºF for 13-15 minutes, until the cake springs back lightly when touched.
Immediately turn the cake out onto the prepared towel, and peel off the parchment paper. Beginning with the narrow end, roll the cake and towel together, and allow to cool completely on a wire rack (this will keep the cake from cracking later when you add the cream cheese filling and re-roll it).
While the cake is cooling, prepare the filling. Beat the cream cheese and butter together in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, until light and fluffy. Add the cinnamon, powdered sugar, and liquid stevia (if using), mixing until well combined. Add the beer, one tablespoon at a time, mixing well between each tablespoon addition. Taste the filling after each tablespoon is added, and pay attention to both the consistency and taste of the filling. You want to be able to taste the beer, but you also don't want the filling to become too thin. For me, 4 tablespoons of beer was perfect, but it may be more or less for you, depending on the humidity of your kitchen and your personal taste.
To assemble the cake, carefully unroll the cake from the towel, and spread the cream cheese filling evenly over the entire cake. Immediately re-roll the cake, just as you did previously with the towel. Cover the pumpkin roll with plastic wrap, and place in the fridge for about 1 hour, until set.
Sprinkle with powdered sugar, slice and serve. This pumpkin roll may be frozen, tightly wrapped, for up to 3 months.
To slice the cake cleanly, without making the roll appear flat on the bottom, use plain dental floss by wrapping the floss around the cake where you want to cut until the ends overlap, and then quickly tug on the floss until it cuts through completely.
Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by DuClaw Brewing Company. All thoughts and opinions are my own.