Beer Bread: In 3-2-1

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This is one of the very few recipes I have committed to memory. And soon, you will understand why.

Three ingredients. No kneading. So many options.

Beer Bread

THREE:  3 cups of Self-Rising Flour
TWO:   2 tablespoons of sugar
ONE:  1 12 oz. can/bottle of room-temperature beer, and maybe another cold one if you need a pick-me-up…I don’t judge.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine the self-rising flour and sugar in a bowl. Slowly pour the beer over the flour/sugar mixture and gently stir until combined. Mixture will be sticky. Apply a light coating of cooking spray to a bread loaf pan. Transfer dough to loaf pan. Gently distribute dough evenly throughout the pan with a butter knife. Drizzle lightly with melted butter or olive oil, if desired. Bake for 50-55 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to rest 5 minutes before removing from pan. Allow to cool 10-15 minutes before slicing.  

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Choosing Your Ingredients

Don’t want to use alcohol? Any carbonated beverage will work: club soda, ginger ale, ginger beer, sparkling/mineral water, etc.

The flavors will be different but that’s the point. Play with it.

Grocery stores are carrying amazing varieties of beer:

  • ale, lager, IPA, stout, porter
  • fruity, spicy, sweet, nutty, hoppy

Or stick with your favorite, most economical beer (my nephews and nieces have a fetish for Busch Light) and mix in other ingredients prior to adding the beer:

  • stir in a tablespoon of Italian seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • stir in 1/4 cup of diced chille/jalapeno/poblano peppers and 1/2 cup finely shredded cheddar cheese
  • stir in 1/2 cup dried currants, 1/4 cup finely chopped pistachios and 1/2 teaspoon cardamom

Choosing Your Pan

Muffins, biscuits, three small loaves, one regular loaf … the only thing to take into consideration is how long it bakes. Drop biscuits will require the least baking time (check after 10-12 minutes). Muffins should be first checked at 14-15 minutes and small loaves at 20-25 minutes.


Preparing Ahead and Giving Away

A 5 pound bag of self-rising flour will make 5 loaves of bread. To make this bread even easier, put 3 cups of the flour into each of 5 quart-size ziploc baggies. Add 2 tablespoons of sugar to each bag and stir a little to mix. Seal tightly, removing as much air as possible and place in the freezer. Then when you want to make a loaf, just proceed as directed in the recipe.

Or instead of using a ziploc baggie, put flour and sugar in a decorative cellophane bag and tie it to a bottle of beer with baking instructions as a fun and simple gift.

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Cleaning Up

Leftovers?  Toast with butter or jelly.  Grilled cheese.  Panini sandwiches.

I have a few more ideas … I’ll test them out and share any successes with you soon!

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