So I had wine, now it’s time for beer ;)
I barely drink beer. But for some reason I sort of like working with beer when I am baking. I have made quite a few breads that contained different sorts of beer and bread types. Malt beer, dark beer, light one; sourdough, yeasted, savory, sweet etc. It is sort of fun using an ingredient that at first might look a little odd. But I pares really well with bread and it also helps with the rising :)
Also it always sound funny if you get asked what you ate for lunch. Beer. Heh. ;)
I made one with some bread malt beer the other day and it had a really distinctive and funny crust, since the sugar in the malt beer caramelized. Working with beer really gives you some fun projects and I am always a bit worried about the outcome. But actually most of the times it turns out good – or at the very least edible ;)
So here is a random beer-bread recipe for you out of a variety I have used. Feel free to use any beer you have on hand. Darker bread will yield a bit more rustic flavor and lighter beer will also result in a lighter taste.
- 400g whole grain rye sourdough
- 1 can of beer (330ml)
- 175g whole grain wheat flour
- 350g whole grain rye flour
- 1 Tbsp. Molasses or Honey
- 15g salt
The evening before prepare the sourdough: Mix 50g of sourdough starter with 170g of whole grain rye flour and 180g of water. Cover with a damp towel and set aside for at least 10 hours.
In the morning (or whenever you make the bread) add the beer to the sourdough starter. Mix until distributed. Then add the flours and the molasses (or honey) and knead thoroughly by hand for about 3-4 minutes. This dough contains a lot of rye so it will be a bit hard to work with. It helps wetting your hands while kneading or you can use kneading machine instead of your hands if you so wish.
Set the dough aside for about 30-50 minutes for autolyse.
After that time transfer the dough to slightly floured working surface and knead the dough (I have used another 40g of white flour during this kneading process). Bit by bit incorporate the salt while kneading. If you have by accident added the salt beforehand, don’t worry. It’s okay as well. Salt will just tighten the gluten a bit, but it’s not really a big deal. In total knead the dough for about 8 minutes here.
Then shape the bread and place into a rising basket. Set aside to rise for about 2-3hours.
Preheat the oven to 250°C. When the bread is done rising transfer it to a hot baking tray or baking stone and cut the outside with a sharp knife of razor blade. Pour a cup of water in the oven and place the bread in the oven, on a middle-lower rack.
Bake at 250°C for about 15 minutes then reduce the heat to 200°C and bake for another 45 minutes. After 30 minutes check the darkness of the bread and cover with aluminum foil if necessary.
Take out and let cool.