There are always those days when bread-lovers want a hearty savory bread to eat, but there isn't quite enough time to make a yeast bread. After all, yeast breads take anywhere from an hour to a full day for the first rise.
Well, that's where this whole-wheat beer bread comes in! It doesn't take long to throw together and bake, but tastes delicious and is relatively healthy due to the use of whole wheat flour. If you don't like whole wheat flour, you can always substitute the same amount of plain white flour for an equally good taste. Plus, the smell while this is in the oven is heavenly.
These ingredients are all commonly used, so they are probably in your pantry already. Have fun baking this beer bread, and try not to eat it all up at once!
What you'll need:
- 1 mixing bowl and a spoon or whisk
- 9 x 5 inch loaf pan for baking
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
- 3 tablespoons sugar, white or brown
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 cup (4 dry oz) grated cheese, whatever kind your heart desires
- 1 12 oz. bottle or can of beer, any brand
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and spray your 9" x 5" pan with cooking spray or line it with parchment paper or aluminum foil. If you choose to line your pan, it will reduce the amount of clean-up required.
In a medium- or large-sized mixing bowl, combine and mix the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar. It's best to sift the flour first, to make the batter slightly less dense, but sifting is not required if you're short on time. It won't affect the taste, only the texture.
Gently mix in the grated cheese. You may use more than 1 cup if you are a cheese lover. Then pour in the beer, and mix just until all the dry ingredients are incorporated. The batter will be stiff; that's normal, so don't fret.
Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan, and top it with the 2 tablespoons of melted butter for a yummy, slightly crispy crust on top. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 50 to 60 minutes, until the top is golden.
Remove the beer bread carefully from the oven and let cool inside the pan for 20 minutes. Then take the bread out of the pan and let it finish cooling on a wire rack. Serve with dinner to your family and friends, or if you really love it, eat it all yourself!
- Either white or brown sugar will work, but brown sugar will give your bread a more molasses-y taste.
- If you have the time, let the batter sit in the pan for half an hour before baking. This seems to improve the end result!
- If you are really trying to watch your health, by all means omit the butter on top. That provides a nice crust, but is not necessary.
- Feel free to experiment! This bread is very versatile. You could try using different types of cheeses--I like Monterey Jack--but almost any kind will work. You could even combine multiple types of cheeses. You can also use whatever beer you would like, but you might as well use a cheap beer in your bread (it will taste great anyway!) and save your expensive beers for drinking. Most people who make beer breads use a lager-style beer, but you can opt for an ale if you want its slightly sweeter, fruitier taste.
- If you like spices, you can add a pinch of your favorite spice. Maybe some peppers, or dill. The possibilities are endless, so have fun with it. Then again, be sure to try the delicious original version once!
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