With more and more beer pairings popping up, we can see a greater awareness with the public as to just how well beer pairs with food. Gone are the days when a pairing meant various varieties of wine paired with many of the same types of foods. Beer’s grain based nature, the herbal hop notes and fruitiness or spiciness of brewers yeast lends to almost infinite pairing possibilities.
You can even think outside of the box of normal pairings. A favorite of mine is mixing sour beers with sweet desserts, such as cupcakes. Though sour is a bit of a catch all term thous, it typically refers to that of a half a dozen traditional beers from Belgium and Germany.
The challenge with a pairing of the type is to find a way for the acidic nature of sour beers to mesh with the sweetness of the cupcakes. The key is in placing non-traditional flavors in the cupcakes that would clash with the beer. Ingredients such as woodruff, cheese or bacon fit the bill and can easily work with a cupcake. Balance the savory with the sweet. Construct each dessert to fit the characteristics of each individual beer.