I have a couple of recipes that are so awesome, and I love them so much I would rush to save them if the house were on fire. This Beer Bread recipe is one of them. I’ve made a few tweeks and changes over the years, improvements really (not to pat myself on the back). It is a favorite with all things BBQ at our house which makes up about 80% of our diet. We also love it with any and every soup I make. This one is a crowd pleaser for sure.
To get the desired crust you will need one specialty piece of equipment, an enamel lined dutch oven with the little drip points on the lid. Using this type of pot is the only way to achieve the humidity necessary for a real artisan style crust. A regular Dutch oven or a heavy stock pot will do for a substitute. I got my enamel lined Dutch oven just for this recipe, although I’ve used it for a zillion other things too. It was a very wise purchase and worth it just for the bread. This recipe is a bit of a time investment so plan ahead. You will not regret it.
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- ¼ tsp yeast
- 1½ tsp salt
- 6 Tbsp room temperature water
- ¾ cup plus 2 Tbsp beer, any lager will do
- 1 Tbsp white vinegar
Combine dry ingredients in large bowl. Add wet ingredients with a rubber spatula and stir just until you get a shaggy ball. Don’t over mix it here or you won’t get the desired texture. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it sit at room temperature 10-18 hours. (Overnight)
Place a 12×18 inch piece of parchment over a 10 inch skillet and spray with cooking spray. Dump the dough onto a lightly floured work surface. This dough is really wet so use plenty of floor and knead 10-15 times. Shape the dough into a ball by pulling the edges into the middle. Place it on the parchment lined skillet seam side down and spray with cooking spray. Cover it loosely with plastic wrap and allow it to raise at room temperature for about 2 hours, until it is doubled in size.
About 30 minutes prior to baking, adjust oven rack to lowest position. Preheat oven to 450 with Dutch oven and lid inside the oven. Remove the plastic wrap and lightly flour the top of the dough. Using a very sharp knife cut a slit down the center of the dough about a half inch deep. Carefully remove the lid from the Dutch oven and using the parchment paper lift the dough into the Dutch oven and replace the lid. Reduce oven temperature to 425 degrees and bake covered for 20 minutes. Remove the lid and continue to bake for another 15 – 25 minutes until bread is deep brown and the center is 210 degrees. Remove the bread and cool for about 2 hours on a wire rack. The hardest part is waiting until it’s cool to cut into this bread. But it’s worth it!