I’m going to let you in on a little secret: You can do more with alcohol than just drink it. Crazy, right?
My second favorite way to enjoy alcohol is to cook with it. White wine stirred slowly into risotto, onions caramelized in bourbon and — probably my absolute favorite— bread made simple with beer.
The simplicity of beer bread is perhaps its best quality. There’s no waiting for the dough to rise, no kneading the sticky mixture with your hands and no second-guessing yourself. The recipe is straight forward, and the addition of beer melts your worries away.
Now, let’s get one thing straight; I’m not the greatest baker in the world. While I watch a lot of baking competitions on TV, my skill level is pretty low. You don’t need to be a superstar baker to make beer bread successfully. You don’t even really need much baking experience at all (if my partner — who can barely make boxed brownies — can do it, so can you).
All you need are a few basic ingredients, a cast iron skillet, and your favorite kosher beer.
Butter – to grease the pan
3 cups flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
1 12-ounce can of kosher beer (something mild in flavor. I’d say a simple pilsner or lager is best)
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. In a cast iron skillet (if you have one — I think it adds a nice flavor and crispness to the bread. If you don’t have one, a loaf pan will work fine). Grease the skillet or pan with butter and dust with cornmeal.
- Mix flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Stir in beer. Mix well. Form dough into a ball and place in skillet.
- Bake for about 35 minutes.
- That’s it. Seriously. Enjoy! (I recommend eating it right away, while it’s still warm.)
This bread is crusty and flavorful, and you’ll love it even more knowing that you made it yourself. It’s pretty hard to mess this recipe up, so it’s a good one to have at your disposal.
Whether you’re in the mood for a good slice of bread or you have a can of kosher beer leftover from the weekend, bake some bread, sit back and enjoy.
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Always drink responsibly.
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