Tuesday, August 10, 2010

BBD#33 - Boozy bread

This month's (number 33) of Bread Baking Day is to bake a bread using alcohol it is hosted by Adriana of Baking Powders. Now that is an intriguing challenge.

What's the Bread Baking Day you ask? It's a bread baking event created by Zorra from 1x umrühren bitte which has been going on for already 3 years! Check out the latest round-up of Italian Breads at Family, Food and other things.

So what's Breads with booze? any yeasted bread which contains booze in any way. You can make a filling with kirsch, a glaze with rum or use beer as your bread's yeast, the limit is your imagination.

Well I never made bread using alcohol before so I thought I would make a simple beer bread.

Three variations on Rye, beer and golden syrup bread

Rye beer bread coupled with golden syrup has a wonderful sour yeast tang with a slight sweetness that matches so well with many ingredients both savoury or sweet. So I thought for this BBD challenge I would make one basic rye, beer and golden syrup dough and make three variations of bread from it. I think the following are some of the best flavourings that go with this basic beer dough.

Hazelnut, chocolate and coffee – serve with coffee or tea
Caraway seed, fennel seed and sage – wonderful with dill cream cheese
Blue cheese, chives and garlic – delightful with cold cuts like honeyed ham or rare roast beef

Starter ingredients
2 cups beer* (the darker the beer the more sour the final bread will be)
1 cup bread flour (or plain flour)
1 rye flour (organic is best)
½ teaspoon instant yeast
4 - 6 tablespoons golden syrup^ (or strong honey) Use more golden syrup if using a dark beer.
* Light beer produces a white crumb with a fresh bread taste; wheat beer makes a golden crumb and crust with a mild tang; while a stout or Guinness makes a dark sour bread. Best to use an “average middle-of-the-road” beer the first time you make this and adjust the beer to your liking the next time you make it. You can use any carbonated drink like soda water or flavoured “soda pop” like ginger ale if you wish.
^ If you desire a beer bread similar to Tastefully Simple package beer bread mix use 2/3 cup of granulated white sugar.

Dough ingredients
3 cups bread flour (or plain flour)
1 cup rye flour (organic is best) or masa harina (corn flour)
3 large eggs, lightly mixed
4 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon instant yeast

Variation one ingredients – Hazelnut, chocolate and coffee
6 tablespoons roasted hazelnuts, roughly chopped
1½ tablespoons cocoa powder, shifted
2 tablespoons golden syrup (or dark strong honey) [taste to see if it is sweet enough add more syrup until there is a good balance]
1 teaspoon instant coffee

Variation two ingredients – Caraway seed, fennel seed and sage
2 tablespoons powdered milk (dry milk powder)
2 tablespoons caraway seeds, toasted lightly crushed
2 tablespoons fennel seeds, toasted lightly crushed
2 tablespoons sage, roughly chopped

Variation three ingredients – Blue cheese, chives, garlic and onion
6 tablespoons of blue cheese, finely chopped
1 tablespoon chives, fresh chopped (or ½ tablespoon of dried chives)
½ tablespoon dried minced garlic pieces
½ tablespoon dried-fried onion flakes

Glaze ingredients (optional) if you want a soft crust
8 tablespoons melted butter

Make the starter
Combine all the starter ingredients into a large bowl using a whisk. Taste the starter you should have a slightly sweet taste but the sour beer taste should be evident add more golden syrup or beer until you obtain a good balance of sweet and sour slightly favouring sweet. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and a tea towel, let stand at room temperature 12-24 hours. After this time the starter should be full of bubbles and have expanded about 2-3 times.

Make the dough
Add the dough ingredients to the starter, mix roughly and leave for ten minutes (or you can leave it in the refrigerator up to three days). Knead the dough (if refrigerated return the dough to room temperature) until smooth and elastic about ten minutes. Let rise until doubled in size about 3 hours.

Make the variations
Punch down the dough divide into three equal parts and knead the variation ingredients into each part respectively. Shape into loaves. Let rise until doubled in size, slash decoratively, (brush with melted butter glaze if using) then bake in preheated 220ºC (430ºF) oven for 35-40 minutes (again brush with melted butter glaze if using).

Unbaked loaves

Baked loaves (from L to R, chocolate; caraway seed and cheese/chives)

Crumb of Hazelnut, chocolate and coffee

Crumb of Caraway seed, fennel seed and sage

crumb of Blue cheese, chives and garlic

I have placed this into Susan's Yeastspotting

Friday, August 6, 2010

A guest posting on Nachiketa's blog Crazy Over Desserts and it's all about picnics

I was invited to do a guest posting on Nachiketa's blog *The Variable - Crazy Over Desserts she wanted me to help her celebrate her 200th posting and since Nachiketa's blog is full of happy grinning people enjoying her fabulous food creations (really her blog is all about the exultation of joyousness). I thought this guest spot would be a great opportunity to give her readers an extensive posting on picnic recipes. I have been collecting picnic links and recipes for a long time and have a large hoard of them. My guest posting has over 200 delicious, tasty and simple picnic recipes that are perfect for any sort of celebration, jubilation or party I thought these recipes would really compliment her blog. Please click here to be transported to a wonderful blog all about happiness and food bliss.

This is a guest post for Nachiketa of The Variable, Crazy Over Desserts - Nachiketa. You can also Catch her on facebook @ Crazy Over Desserts Join her page and leave a comment to become eligible for her special Giveaway prize.

www.crazyoverdesserts.com<br />