Introduction: Beer and Cheese Bread
I guess you could say this is kind of a guy bread, after all it has all the main food groups, beer, cheese, and bread. All except for bacon which I suppose you could add. And being a guy recipe its made in a bread machine. Although to be factual, making this by hand would be difficult since it takes a lot of mixing to break all the cheese up so it becomes part of the bread. That little paddle in the bread machine does a fantastic job of chopping relentlessly until it is all mixed. Maybe a hammer would work for that if you did it by hand. Maybe. Would be fun to try.
Step 1: Pretty Simple, Even a Guy Can Do It.
So this is a pretty basic bread except for the extra stuff. I have changed it some from the original one I tried. Among other things I substituted a cup of whole wheat flour because I like it.
You start with beer. Now the original said 10 oz of beer but I found that the final mix was to dry with that amount. I think that is because my flour is dry and I always end up adding extra water to almost any recipe. Why would my flour be dry? Well, the inside humidity is about 15 % at the moment and it sucks the moisture out of everything. My cats fur lights up with all the static charge they develop. So it needs the extra water, so why not use more beer?
The type of beer? Well I tried one of those dark strong flavored ones but to me the bread had a bitter taste from it. Other people didn't think so, so basically go with what you like. For a mild flavor use a mild beer. if you like the strong beer then go with that.
The beer needs to be flat and warm. In other words you need to ruin it. I found the best way is to first take a sip, and then pour the rest into a bowel or cup and use a spoon to stir it until a lot of the bubbles leave. Then microwave it for a little bit until its warm. Stick your finger in it and taste it and if you lament about having ruined it then its just right.
Yum, warm flat beer.
It should be a little less than 12 oz, unless your sip was more like a glug.
Now just leave it alone and put the rest together.
Step 2: The Rest of the Stuff
You need 3 cups of flour. I used 2 of a bread flour and one of whole wheat. I think it has a little more body that way.
Interestingly I had just put some wood in the wood stove when I started this loaf and I had some sawdust stuck to my shirt. When I plunked the bread pan down on the table some of the saw dust fell into the empty pan. And I had a moment of inspiration --- I wonder if I add a tablespoon of sawdust to it can I enter it into the wood contest? I of course had to look up information about sawdust and bread. It has happened and been done. In fact around the turn of the century, well the one before this one, it was not uncommon for it to be put in prisoners bread. It is undigestible and costs almost nothing but makes people feel like they are getting food. You might want to look up information on it, its very interesting. And now its being added to bread for dieters, refined cellulose, because it is undigestable but makes you feel like your eating something. But now its all labeled and such so you know what your getting.
OK, no sawdust in this one.
3 cups of flour
1 tablespoon of sugar (I often use honey instead of or even with)
1 1/2 teaspoons of salt
1 tablespoon of butter, or margarine
12 oz of flat warm beer
1 package of yeast, you can use bread machine yeast or quick rise yeast, whatever works the best for you.
8 oz of cheese - yeah its a lot of cheese. I found the type of cheese has a big impact on the flavor of the bread.
In one of my other tries, along with the dark beer I also used 4 oz of extra sharp cheddar cheese and 4 oz of Monterrey jack. Wow did that Cheddar flavor come through. If you want strong flavor go for it. For this one I used mild Cheddar and Monterrey Jack, half and half.
Cut up the cheese into bit size blocks.
Step 3: Put It All Together.
I have read bread machine instructions where they say to put in ingredients in a certain order. I never saw the point since it all gets mixed up in the first few seconds anyway.
So I start with one cup of flour and then melt the butter and add that along with the other dry stuff, add some cheese and then add some of the beer. Add another cup of flour on top of that and add the rest of the cheese and some more beer and then the rest of the flour and beer.
As long as it all gets in there, that is what matters.
Step 4: Mixing
This is the easy part, compliments of the bread machine. It does all the work.
Set the program for a basic bread. I always set the crust to light, maybe that is just because of my machine. Do it the way you like it. Mine takes 3 hours to run the program.
This is the one important part ----
After a few minutes when it is all mixed check to see what the ball looks like. If it is to dry there will still be a lot of flour left that is not formed into the ball. You need to add water a little at a time until everything is picked up into the ball. If it is too wet it will have stuff sticking to the sides of the pan and looking a little gooey. If it does this you need to add a little flour a spoon at a time until nothing is sticking to the sides of the pan. You should have a nice solid ball that doesn't stick to the sides.
You will notice that the cheese gets chopped up as the mixing progress. Pretty soon you wont even be able to see any pieces of cheese at all. It all gets blended into the ball.
Step 5: The Results
After 3 hours, the machine beeps and you get to take out your finished loaf.
All that is left is to cut it up, put a little butter on it and enjoy it.
Wow, that is good stuff.
Make a sandwich by adding a few slices of bacon and you have a complete snack. Or if your into hot stuff you can dip pieces into hot sauce. However you like it.
By the way, in case your wondering, all the alcohol is evaporated out of this in the baking process so its fine for anybody to eat including children.