Friday, October 7th, 2011

No-Rise Beer Bread for Idiots and Loons

There’s a thing that happens in the Fall and it always ends with random beers in your refrigerator. Which is fine if you’re normal, but perhaps you are a person who insists on being able to see the back wall of the fridge at all times and has a slight compulsion that causes you to remove price tags from foodstuffs and insist that all labels be facing forward? Because if you’re a person like that—not that you are—those stray beers rattling around inside your otherwise perfectly organized icebox might make you Shining-levels of crazy.

And sure, you could just drink the beers but perhaps you are also a person who likes a good recipe? Because if you’re a person like that, those stray beers might start talking to you as part of the whole Shining thing you’ve achieved and are all, “Make me into beer bread! Everyone loves a recipe with alcohol in it! BREADRUM! BREADRUM!" *makes creepy finger gesture*

Or maybe it’s just that beer bread can be as stupid easy to make as you want it to be, and it’s Fall and curling up with your needlepoint while a loaf of homemade bread bakes in your oven just sounds so cozy and delightful.

So shall we? Yes, let’s shall.

The first order of business is to get a big ol’ bowl, into which you should put these things. The goal here, besides putting beer inside you, is to end up with a product that looks like bread dough. Since beer comes in bottles, unless you live in a bar with taps and kegs (and, if you do, can I come live with you?), we’ll be working with a specific liquid measure. Let’s start here:

• 2 ½ cups flour (here you can go with white, wheat, or a mix-y-match-y of things, like maybe wheat-and-rye?) with some reserved
• 1 tablespoon sugar or honey
• 1 tablespoon baking powder
• 1 teaspoon salt

Now stir that stuff up so it’s mixed together. If you want to get fancy, and by all means you should get fancy, look at you, you fancy thing!, you can add a tablespoon or so of a spice blend you like (I often use this CRAZY HOT stuff a friend bought off the Amish) or you could mix in some cheese, say about a half cup of it, or you could use your imagination! Hell, you’re already talking to the beer bottles, I know that brain of yours is capable of creative thinking!

All that’s left to do now is add the bottle of beer, and we are referring to a 12-ounce bottle of it, and you should do this slowly because you can’t possibly be so stupid as to not know what would happen if you furiously beat a bottle of beer into a dry mix that has leavener in it, right? (Just checking.) (Dummy.) Ooh also? The dummies among us probably need to be told that the type of beer used will affect the flavor of the bread. (The kooks have already been told that by the talking beer bottle.) I saw some flap recently about pumpkin beer (which, ew yes ew, sounds pretty vile) but actually might be pretty delish in beer bread? Think about it. Ooooh, you know what would be super cute? Use pumpkin beer and then top the bread with salted pumpkin seeds (and then you could also bake a few razor blades into it and give it out on Hallowe’en! Oh my God, no don’t do that).

So, once you have incorporated all the beer, you may find this a wet sloppy mess. Add flour until this resembles dough—something between zero, ½ and a whole cup of flour will make it dough-like. Use your best judgment! (Ha ha!) It should be neither super-sticky nor super-dry.

Pour the batter into a buttered loaf pan and bake at 375 for 45 minutes, checking after 30. If you want a crustier bread, spray it with water before and throughout, and/or put a roasting pan of ice and water in the bottom of the oven. If you want a shiny bread, brush the top of the dough with an egg wash (1 egg + 2 tablespoons of water). That’s it! I know, right? So stupid easy! And/or crazy easy!

Jolie Kerr isn’t even sure. Just… go with it.

Photo by freethehops.

19 Comments / Post A Comment

HiredGoons (#603)

Would Hefeweizen be redundant? Inquiring minds…

jolie (#16)


lbf (#2,343)


wallsdonotfall (#6,378)

And then in another month, it's time for stout gingerbread! Also, beer pumpkin bread. And whiskey pie. God, I love the fall.

john.rambow (#703)

Where do you stand on using a coffee can rather than a pan, which is what some recipes specify? I suppose it's just another way to emphasize the "look at me — using things wrongly (but deliciously!)" vibe. Either way, beer bread is a little magic — I like to throw in a little dill.

C_Webb (#855)

You can buy some crazyass shit off the Amish.

Mr. B (#10,093)

What is an "icebox"? Inquiring youngs want to know!

@Mr. B: It's a wireless cooling device developed by Steve Jobs in 1978.

bitzyboozer (#6,867)

@Mr. B iCebox

petejayhawk (#1,249)

I did not wake up today expecting to see a can of Halcyon Wheat (Manhattan, Kansas' finest wheat beer in a can) on The Awl but there we are.

It's a sign. A sign that I should start drinking.

Fresh Hell (#139,890)

Pumpkin beer is actually delicious.

noilly (#3,193)

The next Awl blog: The Inebrieater

madge mumblecrust (#11,411)

I made a loaf this morning with some Newcastle I had leftover from making chili yesterday! So good!

lovelettersinhell (#13,711)

Jolie, Jolie, Jolie. Get thee to your local package store and pick up some southern tier pumpking. It is deeeeeelish.

sharilyn (#4,599)

I made this last night when I got home from work and it was SO. EASY. I used Blue Moon Summer Honey Wheat with a bit of garam masala in the mix, and I sprinkled rolled oats on top and dusted the loaf with rice four for a extra crunchy top. Made little jelly sandwiches for the bike ride this morning. Can't believe that as recently as last week I waited hours and hours for bread dough to rise! NEVER AGAIN.

@sharilyn Did you knead the dough? Or is it really a matter of just throwing all the ingredients together and baking?

[I want to try it tonight!]

@sharilyn I'm sorry! I only just realized that this post was from a year ago.

my book,,,THE WOLF WITH BELL,,,coming soon.
Levent ISLEK

Pandemic Endemic (#3,825)

All of the beer bread recipes I've used call for 1/4 – 1/2 cups of butter, which makes the bread mouth-wateringly delicious but too greasy. Thanks for sharing your leaner, meaner version of the recipe, jolie.

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