Sunday, March 17, 2013

Beer Bread

In celebration of St. Patrick's Day, we were cooking Shepherd's Pie, but needed a starter to accompany the meal.  So, on a day filled with lots of green beer, we found it only fitting to make a little beer bread.

What's so great about beer bread is that it can be a quick last minute decision.  Because beer is naturally yeasty, you don't need to do a more traditional yeast starter that sits for hours.  Plus, the ingredients are pretty easy to come by in your typical pantry.

Everything just mixes together and cooks in one.  Go ahead, give it a try!

3 cups self-rising flour (or 3 cups all-purpose flour plus 1 TBS baking powder)
1 12-oz light beer*
3 TBS honey or agave nectar
1 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Grease a loaf pan with butter or cooking spray.

Mix together the flour (and baking powder) and salt.
Pour in the beer and add the honey, then stir together.  The mixture will be a bit sticky and lumpy.  Yum, you can start smelling the yeasty goodness of the beer.
Spread the mixture into the greased loaf pan.
Place in the oven for 55 minutes.  The bread is finished when the top is just slightly browned and it passes the toothpick test.**
Serve with honey, butter, or my personal favorite, spreadable cheese!

* I like to use a lager (Yuengling!) or pale ale.

** Pop a toothpick into the bread and pull it out.  The toothpick should be clean, not at all wet or sticky.