Let’s bring some added cheer to the holiday season on Aruba! Our beer pairing inspirations continue, matching Aruban holiday food traditions with our island’s local beers. Read on for festive ideas for uniquely tasty pairings.
Ayacas originate in Venezuela, but Arubans have added their own Caribbean twist, topping a meat mixture, along with prunes, raisins, olives, pickles, cashews, and onion, onto a cornmeal dough smeared on plantain or banana leaves. The assemblage is then folded, tied with string, and boiled in salted water for about an hour.
Pairing an ayaca with the tropical notes and toasted grains in Magic Mango brings a mouthful of holiday island vibes to your palate.
Many local parties feature a collection of munchies with a variety of tastes and textures. From cheese balls and webo jenas (deviled eggs) to Dutch kroket and hotdog rolls, opting for an ice-cold Balashi between noshes helps cleanse the palate to make way for the next flavor bomb coming your way.
Arubans bake their holiday hams topped with pineapple rings and cherries. Pouring a bottle of magic mango (reserve 2 tablespoons of beer for glazing) over the top before baking yields a deliciously moist and flavorful ham. Follow that up with our Magic Mango and brown sugar glaze for the ideal savory/sweet flavor combo.
Mix all ingredients in small saucepan and bring to slow boil (stirring frequently), then remove from heat and cool to thicken. When ham is fully cooked, pour glaze on top and spread evenly.
Goat soup, known locally as sopi di cabrito, is a favorite during the holiday season, whether serving as a warm-up before dinner, a light Christmas Day lunch, or a late-night treat. Soak it all up with some funchi and wash it down with a crisp and refreshing Balashi and your holiday meal is complete.
These stuffed bread loaves are made with a yeast-based dough stuffed with layers of ham, olives, and raisins. The fruity essence of Magic Mango pairs with the raisins while the lager-based beer balances the saltiness of the ham and olives.
This Dutch holiday donut is pretty basic: fried dough with raisins and topped powdered sugar. Oliebolen trucks and stands pop up around the island starting in November. Balashi is an unusual but tasty pairing with oliebolen, we promise! The yeast-based dough complements the yeast and grain in this lager quite nicely, and helps break up the sugar on your palate.
Local sweet treats like cashew cake and prune cake make appearances throughout the holiday season on Aruba. Both prunes and cashews partner up with mango for a great flavor combo, and the hops in the beer contrast with the sweetness of the cakes for a surprisingly balanced pairing.
Beernog—yes, it’s a thing! Eggnog with a splash of beer has become a holiday trend in the U.S. Our authentic Aruban version mixes Magic Mango with ponche crema. Like eggnog, ponche cream combines egg yolks, cream, rum, and a variety of fragrant spices. We opted for the pistachio ponche crema with a splash of Magic Mango and it’s sure to be a holiday hit! Pistachio partners with mango while the toasted grain in the beer adds character and contrast to the creamy decadence of ponche crema. Try it, you’ll like it!