If Food Could Drink is an ongoing Beltramo’s blog feature with the aim of showcasing the multitude possibilities for cooking with beer, wine, and spirits. Recipes may include anything from appetizers to entrees to deserts, and will range in complexity, but always with the goal of encouraging readers to explore the nuances and versatility of alcohol in the kitchen. Eat, Drink, and be Merry!
“Beer makes you feel the way you ought to feel without beer.” – Henry Lawson
Bread and Beer are cousins. Whisky and Beer are cousins too, but Beer and Whisky get to party together all the time. Why there doesn’t seem to be as much love between the former two has always been much of a mystery to me. I mean, they used to be a lot more close in ye olden days (Ex. The Plowman’s Lunch: bread, cheese, and beer), but they’ve kind of had a falling out lately.
Here’s where I could do some ranting. I might, for instance, feel inclined to rail against the recent trend of carb-bashing that has swept our calorie-obsessed culture over the past few years. People concerned about their waistline make the choice between Beer OR bread. I could be very bitter about this, my friends, but I would prefer to just sip on a nicely refreshing hoppy and bitter Beer. Yes, my friends, I would rather focus on the matter at hand and find a solution in order to get these two old friends back together. What will it take? I believe the answer lies in a double feature of sorts. Or better yet, a buddy flick starring both these tasty titans.
What I want is bread made with Beer. Dark, bold Beer to make a hearty and flavorful bread. I’m talking about banana bread made with Stout. So I implore you to put down the caloric calculator and try this recipe on for size next time you’re in the kitchen.
- 1 mashed banana
- ½ cup brown sugar, packed
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground clove
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 cup toasted chopped pecans
- 1 cup golden raisins, packed
- 1 cup Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout
First, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large bowl, mash the banana and combine with the brown sugar, granulated sugar, egg, oil, and vanilla extract. Separately, sift together the wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking soda, salt, and all the ground spices. Add the flour mixture into the bowl with the wet ingredients in parts, alternately with the Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout to ensure the ingredients are completely blended. Then fold in the chopped pecans and raisins.
Pour the batter into a medium bread pan and bake for one hour. When you take the bread out of the oven, let it cool in the pan for 15 minutes before taking it outand letting it rest on a cooling rack.
This bread is dense. Black hole dense. It’s heavy and dark and packed with flavor. The Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout adds heft and notes of coffee and chocolate, while the golden raisins and spices brighten up the scene a little and add some flare. Tying it all together is the creamy banana. Here we have Beer and bread back together again, and thick as thieves! I like to warm up a slice in either the microwave or toaster and then spread the bread with butter and paired with a glass of milk. Who says Beer isn’t for breakfast?
Neal F., Beltramo’s Spirits Staff