Thursday, March 08, 2012

Beer - it's what's for dinner

It's only been almost 3 months since I got the Third Good Eats book, The Later Years.  It's about time I featured a recipe from it, don't you think?

I decided it has been far too long since I made bread, which is one of my favorite things to make.  The smell of freshly baked bread is only surpassed by that warm bread taste - because warm bread really does taste better, don't you think?

Usually when I make bread I make yeast breads.  Partly because I like to show off.  Partly because there is something therapeutic about punching down the dough.  Partly because I love the smell of the yeasty dough as it grows, filling the kitchen with it's aroma.

Because of my yeast background I was awestruck by how quickly this bread came together.  Few ingredients thrown in a bowl and then poured in a pan.  By the time you gather all the ingredients you're over halfway there!

My only complaint about this bread is a user error.  I thought a nice red ale would be perfect for the beer part of the beer bread.  I used Captain Sig's Northwestern Ale. But the beer was a little too hoppy for my tastes.  I'm sensitive to hops - Thatboy LOVES hoppy beers.  I don't.  The hoppy beer made the bread pretty hoppy.  I was able to counteract the bite by using a honey butter as spread, but in the future I'll probably use a sweeter beer, maybe a porter or a rich brown ale.

Beer Bread (From Alton Brown's Good Eats 3, The Later Years)
8 ounces all-purpose flour
4 ounces whole-wheat flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon chopped fresh dill
4 1/2 ounces sharp cheddar, grated
12 ounces cold beer
1 to 2 tablespoons sunflower seeds
  1. Preheat oven to 375.  Spray a 9 x 5 loaf pan with baking spray and set aside.  Combine the flours, baking powder, salt, sugar, and dill in a large mixing bowl. 
  2. Add in the cheese and stir in the beer just to combine. Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan. Sprinkle with the sunflower seeds.
  3. Bake on the middle rack of the oven about 45 to 55 minutes.
  4. Remove from the oven and cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Transfer the loaf to a cooling rack for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing and serving.

4 comments:

  1. Between the beer and yeast knowledge and the look of this bread you have me totally impressed

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  2. This looks like it would make for some darn delicious sandwiches... What a great bread recipe in time for St. Patrick's Day!

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  3. Maybe I'll try this. I made a horrible loaf of beer bread recently. Nice photos!

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  4. I've been wanting to try a cheese-infused beer bread though I'm not really a beer lover at all. I do have some guinness lying around though...

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