I'm a cook. I'm not a baker. Well, I need to amend that last statement. I was a baking virgin for my first 61 years of life. That all changed while preparing St. Patrick's Day dinner for my family last week. I have two, 30" ovens that, up until last weekend, had been used exclusively for roasting, broiling, convecting and all other forms of heating up meat.
My grandmother and kitchen hero, Goldie, was both a baker and a cook. But I never really had an interest in it. It seems to me to be some sort of high alchemy. I never wanted to learn the chemistry and truth be told, I just don't eat many carbohydrates.
Cody Matz is a fellow CrossFitter at our noon class at CrossFit Edina. He also happens to be a meteorologist at the Fox 9 TV station. So I've been watching Fox 9 news for my morning fix....it's nice to hear the forecast from someone you know. Last week they had a woman named Amy on the show going over some of her favorite St. Patrick's Day recipes. One of them was for beer bread....and I was stunned by how incredibly simple the recipe was.
I went to her food blog, thecookingmom.com, and got the recipe. Then I did a little more research out on the Interwebs and found that this recipe is ubiquitous. Probably because I have had no interest in baking that I have never heard of it. But, dang, it's so simple my dog could make it without screwing it up. No chemistry. No special kneading. No rising. Just slap four simple ingredients together and shove it in the oven. Self-rising flour. Sugar. Butter. Beer. Done.
This is a rustic, hearty bread. When you combine these four ingredients, do not over-mix. You want the batter to be lumpy. Give the mixture a couple of good swirls and then slap it into a loaf pan. That's it. You are now a baker, just like me!
3 cups self-rising flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 bottle beer (12 oz)
1/2 cup melted butter
- Preheat oven to 375º.
- In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar and beer. Stir until lumpy.
- Spoon mixture into a loaf pan. Pour butter on top.
- Bake for 45 minutes. Remove and let bread cool for 15 minutes.
- Slice and serve.
Pairing: More beer!