Bread and beer. Two of God’s greatest gifts to mankind. It’s got to be that whole “magic of yeast” thing, wouldn’t you agree? I regularly stay away from both of them because I figure I’ve got more than enough vices as it is. Any more and I may qualify as a new antagonist in the next Batman film.
Anyway, when one normally thinks of beer, it’s no more difficult than popping the cap and taking a pull. But when we think about bread, especially making it, the idea is fraught with the laborious process of measuring, stirring, kneading and rising. There’s a fair amount of industrial toil and effort that goes into the process. You have to really want to make bread to enjoy great bread.
Today, we shall bypass the labor and zip straight to the party. Even if you’re not celebrating like a thirsty Irish Catholic today, feel free (like many others on the planet) to subtly nod in the direction of the North Sea and enjoy a few of those finer things introduced to us by the lucky ol’ Irish.
Guinness Brown Bread
2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup almond flour (or white)
1/3 cup oatmeal (regular, not quick cooking)
2 1/2 teaspoons of baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 tablespoons of dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon of espresso powder
3 tablespoons of butter
16 ounces of milk (I’m using 8 oz. regular milk and 8 oz. almond milk)
2/3 cup of black strap molasses (or black treacle)
1/2 pint of Guinness (or dark stout beer)
Combine all the dry ingredients and then incorporate chopped up butter into the dough until it has the consistency of bread crumbs. Mix in the milk, the molasses and the beer. Stir until you have wet dough. Pour into a greased loaf tin and bake at 350° for 35-40 minutes. Cool and serve slices with a sweet cream butter.