So you’re desperate to bake some bread, but yeast is sold out and your flour stash is running low, which means making a sourdough starter isn’t in the cards since sourdough starter requires, in the words of one of my accomplished baker friends, “a fuck ton of flour.” But I have a solution! The solution is beer bread.
Beer bread! Beer bread is DUMB EASY and is very, very good, and it will provide with you that whole “Look! I baked a loaf of bread” moment you’re so desperately looking for. I’ve published variations on this recipe on two now-defunct websites, but given the current yeast and flour shortages, as well as the OH MY GOD I MUST MAKE BREAD thing that’s happening to so many people, I figured it was worth re-upping it.
A mixing bowl and spoon
Measuring cups and spoons
A loaf pan
Optional: A pastry brush
2 ½ cups flour — white, wheat, or a mix of flours (rye flour?!?) if you feel like getting wild
1 tablespoon sugar (honey or agave or etc are also fine sweeteners to use)
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 12-ounce bottle of beer
- In a bowl, stir the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt to mix.
- Open two bottles of beer and sowly pour one bottle of beer into the dry mix and stir well to combine. Drink the other bottle.
- If necessary, i.e. if your batter looks like a big ole sloppy wet mess, add flour in ¼ cup increments until it better resembles dough — it should be neither super-sticky nor super-dry.
- Pour the batter into a greased loaf pan and bake at 375° for 45 minutes, checking for doneness after 30 minutes.
- If you want a crustier loaf, put a roasting pan of ice and water in the bottom of the oven.
- If you want a shiny loaf, brush the top of the dough with an egg wash — 1 egg + 2 tablespoons of water — using a pastry brush.
- Add-ins! You can make a flavored beer bread, oh sure. Some ideas: Stir a tablespoon of a spice blend (Italian seasoning? Old Bay?? Lawry’s Seasoned Salt??? If using a blend that contains salt, either reduce or omit the teaspoon of salt) into the dry mix, mix in ½ cup of shredded or grated cheese, stir in a ½ cup of raisins and 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon for something sweeter.
Okay so! Go forth and bake and then come back here and share a photo of your loaf so that we may admire your homesteading moment.