Thursday, March 24, 2011
As If I Needed Another Reason to LOVE Beer...
ATTENTION, those of you with "yeast anxiety*." I think I have found just the thing for you. It's called Beer Bread. It can take as little as 4 ingredients (if you use self-rising flour), there is no kneading or rise time, and there is absolutely no (wait for it) pesky little packet of (wait for it some more) YEAST! But you'd never know it to taste it. This stuff is just as flavorful as anything I'd spend hours kneading and punching down. It's dense (a friend likened its density to banana bread), a little sweet, slightly chewy, and has a delicious yeasty aroma. Best of all: it has an AMAZING crunchy, buttery crust. Quite frankly, I believe it has changed my life.
I know some of you are already familiar with this stuff. I hear you can purchase mixes for it. I have to wonder WHY you'd purchase them. This stuff couldn't be simpler, really. I made it for dinner tonight and with the hour baking time, I think it took me all of an hour and ten minutes to make.
I found this recipe at Food.com. It's perfect just the way it is, but you could certainly play around with the flavors and make it your own. Seriously. Make this, and then sit back and listen to everyone be amazed. You WILL thank me for it.
(Posted by Gerald Norman on Food.com)
3 c. flour (sifted)**
3 tsp. baking powder (omit if using Self-Rising Flour)
1 tsp. salt (omit if using Self-Rising Flour)
1/4 c. sugar
12 oz. room temperature beer
1/4 c. melted butter
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Pour in the beer and mix until combined. Pour the batter into a greased or sprayed bread pan and spread it out evenly. Pour the melted butter*** on top and bake for an hour. Remove from pan and cool at least 15 minutes before slicing.
* You think I'm just being silly, but I SWEAR I once attended a class entitled "Overcoming Yeast Anxiety." It was sponsored by the nice folks at the King Arthur Company, and it was very informative and entertaining. Nevertheless, the friend who dragged me there (okay, she told me there would be food) still fears the yeasties a little, I think. This one's for you, Kimmy!
** I try not to sift if I can help it. I know, I know...goes against everything we bakers stand for, yadayadayada...I'm lazy. Sue me. All I did was follow the tried-and-true "spoon the flour into the cup and level with a knife" method. Worked like a charm. If you really must be exact, my friend Kevin says you need 390 grams of flour. Thanks, Kev!
*** This is what makes the heavenly crust I was telling you about. If you like a softer crust, just mix the butter in with the beer.