Glorious Guinness Bread for St. Paddy’s Day

Owing to the slogan ‘Guinness is good for you’, this freshly baked guinness bread is perfect for St.Paddy’s Day meal. Have you visited the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, Éire? The seven floor building shaped like a pint glass is the ‘Home of Guinness’ where Arthur Guinness brewed pints of ‘the black stuff’ using barley, yeast, hops and water. Over the past 5 years, I’ve commuted several times via James Street, but visited the brewery just once in 2007. When you reach the gravity bar in the seventh floor, you’re offered a pint of Guinness. That is where I had my first sip of Guinness. As I gulped the syrupy black bitter beer with a grimace on my face, I swore never to have it neat. That’s my relationship with this malt flavored beverage.

While sorting out the stuff in my refrigerator, I saw a bottle of Guinness that has been sitting untouched for a week. I salvaged by pouring this nitrogen driven dry draught into a bowl of dry flour to make this dense and hoppy tasting loaf. This can be whipped in minutes, popped into the oven and in less than an hour it’s done. When baking there is bitter sweet aroma of chocolate and roasted coffee wafting around the kitchen. This bread has the textured appearance and a shallow slit of a classic quick bread. Generously slathered with butter, a slice eaten when still warm is a meal in itself. It goes great with tea or a bowl of soup.

Makes 1 8×4 inch loaf

2 cups unbleached All purpose flour

12 oz bottle of Guinness beer * I used guinness draught

1/3 cup Brown sugar

3 tablespoon unsulphured Molasses * Original recipe calls for black treacle which I didn’t have. Hence the substitution.

1/2 cup Buttermilk * See below for buttermilk substitute

2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon Salt

Butter for greasing the pan and brushing the top

Method

  • Preheat the oven at 350º F/ 180º C. Prepare the loaf pan by greasing the inside with butter.
  • Combine all the dry ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.
  • Pour half a bottle of beer, molasses and buttermilk. Stir gently. Now mix in the remaining beer and stir just to combine. 
  • Do not over-mix. The batter looks lumpy, but that’s how it is supposed to be. You’ll get a moist, pasty, doughy batter. 
  • Spoon the batter into the greased pan and pop into the preheated oven. Bake for about 40 minutes.
  • As you know, ovens vary. So, check doneness after 30 minutes by inserting a wooden skewer. If it comes out with no batter stuck to it, then the bread is done.When completely baked, the edges pull away from the sides. This bread cracks on top and slightly darker around the edges. This is normal.
  • Remove loaf pan from the oven and cool for 15 minutes. Brush the top with soft butter. Once completely cool, slice the bread.
  • Toast the bread slice till warm. I used a skillet to toast, as the slices are small to fit into the toaster. Slather with butter and serve.

Buttermilk substitute (Acidified buttermilk) – Take a little less than 1 cup 2% dairy/low-fat/fat-free milk. Add 1 tbsp vinegar or lemon juice to make 1 cup. Let stand for 10 minutes. This gives 1 cup buttermilk substitute. * Use room temperature milk. If not warm milk in the microwave for 15 seconds before proceeding with the preparation.

Announcing that it has Guinness brought a smile on PR’s face. The finished flavor of this bread has a hint of the heavy bodied Guinness. I don’t mind Guinness in the bread, cake and stew. I enjoyed the beer in the bread.  Éirinn go Brách 🙂

Also see – Banana Buttermilk Pancakes

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