Saturday, January 23, 2016

Guinness Bread

And, no, this isn't a sacrilegious waste of Guinness -- I got the recipe in Ireland, so it is totally approved. And to make things easier, I converted it from metric to U.S.

1-1/8 C whole wheat flour
3/4 C all-purpose flour
1/4 C rolled oats (old-fashioned oats), plus a bit extra for decoration
3/4 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda

3/4 C milk
3/4 C buttermilk
1/4 C molasses (Irish recipe says black treacle)
1-1/8 Tablespoon melted butter
1/3 C Guinness.

Preheat oven to 375 F.
 Mix dry ingredients and set aside. 
Bring all wet ingredients to room temperature, mix, and mix with dry ingredients. The batter will be very wet.
Bake at 375F for about 45 minutes if using a standard metal loaf pan. (The Irish recipe said 190 C for 1 hour and 10 minutes, which seemed too long; maybe they use a different type of baking

pan, perhaps ceramic?) Meanwhile, drink the rest of the bottle of Guinness. Or the rest of the six-pack, your call. As with all quick breads, let it cool for 10-15 minutes before slicing so it won't crumble. It will still be warm enough to melt butter.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Whole wheat sandwich bread

I can't claim credit for this recipe, so I will just share the link. This loaf slices really well for sandwiches or toast, as long as you have a good serrated bread knife. And you can slice it fairly thinly without it crumbling, which is not always the case with homemade bread.

The one thing I do differently is that I don't haul out the stand mixer. I just mix it by hand and knead it by hand, because for me, that's one of the two best things about making homemade bread. Also, because it is the way I was taught, I do scald the milk, even if it's just by zapping it in the microwave. Just be sure to let it cool to "body temp" before adding to the yeast mixture.

The recipe is almost exactly the same as my late father's recipe for whole wheat bread, except his makes six loaves, and that's too much for me. Two loaves, I can deal with.

Unlike most homemade breads, which, because they don't have preservatives, usually dry out overnight, this lasts several days, especially if you put it in a plastic bag after it has completely cooled. And it freezes well, again, in a heavy duty plastic bag with as much air sucked out as you can manage. I'm pretty sure that the honey is what helps keep it so long, so it might not work as well if you were substituting brown sugar or something because you were out of honey (you'd need to add a little more liquid as well in that case).


About Me

My photo
This is me enjoying a limoncello in Rome on the last night of our trip to Italy. Funny thing is, I don't really like limoncello that much, but thought it would be great in a dessert. And wouldn't you know, The Barefoot Contessa just did a great fruit salad with limoncello. So now I can't. Oh, well.