I discovered beer bread about 20 years ago and it’s a standard for me to make when we have smoked brisket. My dad even raved about it, and he’s a tough critic! I made some last weekend and while looking at one end of the loaf, I discovered it looked like my daughter’s rabbit, Ziggy!
If you look closely at the photo, you’ll see two eyes, a nose and a mouth. Okay, I still look at clouds and see things that others don’t. Wait! Don’t let me scare you off. Let me tell you some more about beer bread.
Beer bread has been a long-time favorite, mostly due to its ease of preparation as well as its versatility. It is referred to as a quick bread because it requires minimal preparation time. The chemical leavening agents (i.e., baking powder) react quickly when combined with liquid ingredients, causing the batter or dough to begin rising immediately.
As for its versatility, the possibilities are endless.
- The dough can be baked in as a loaf of bread or as muffins; or, mini tart pans can be used to make soup bowls.
- Different beers can be experimented with for different tastes. Or, really surprise your guests by using a carbonated beverage other than beer! Popular substitutes are ginger ale, apple juice and club soda. (Note: regardless of which beverage is used, it needs to be at room temperature.
- This bread makes the best toast I have ever had!
Then get creative and add different combinations of:
Following are some add-in options to get your creative juices flowing:
- dried blueberries
- diced onions
- crumbled cooked bacon
- sun-dried tomatoes & pitted black olives
- dried cranberries & chopped pecans
- dried currants & pine nuts
- black pepper & basil
- shredded cheddar cheese & parsley
- shredded cheddar cheese & green chilies
- shredded cheddar cheese & chopped green olives
- walnuts & mashed ripe bananas
- spinach & shredded parmesan cheese
- raisins & walnuts
- sun-dried tomatoes, basil & shredded mozzarella cheese
- thyme, rosemary & sage
- carrots, red peppers, green peppers
Here is the basic recipe for beer bread to start with.
1 (12 ounces) can beer
1/2 cup sugar
3 cups self-rising flour
1 stick butter
Note: If you don’t have self-rising flour mix 3 cups of regular flour, 4 teaspoons of baking powder and 1 teaspoon salt as a substitute.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9×5-inch loaf pan. Mix beer, sugar and flour. Bake for 1 hour. Every 10 minutes top bread with small pieces of butter, using whole stick of butter.