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Yo, this bread is seriously easy to make. Don't freak out because of your inability to bake. You can handle this! Make it as a side for dinner, it's delicious. You'll be happy you did when you munch into the leftovers come breakfast next morning.
Here's what you'll need:
- 3 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 (12 ounce) can of decent beer
- 1/2 cup melted butter
Before you begin, you should know the beer you use changes the taste of the bread slightly. If you care about such things, here are some suggestions you might appreciate. For those who don't drink beer consider asking a friend for beer advice, or pick-up a bottle of pilsner. If you don't want to buy a whole case of beer (a problem for those here in Pennsylvania), you can pick up a six pack from some grocery markets.
- Skip light beers like Coors or Budweiser. They don't add much to the flavor. Considering they taste like water, it's not that surprising. They contain very little sugar and the bread needs yeast and sugar to rise properly.
- Pale Ales can make the bread taste a little bitter. If you enjoy that kind of taste, this might be for you.
- Brown or Amber ales are pretty safe for a large group to enjoy. The malt in beers like these is a good companion to the flour in the bread. Some have fruity, citrus-y flavors too which add to the taste.
- The strong flavor of Stouts might not be for everyone, but are still easy to enjoy if you like that sort of flavor. However, due to the specific gravity of stouts you might find it to be a little heavy after baking. Stouts tend to contain heavy amounts of sugar, so if you choose to use a stout consider adjusting the amount of sugar you add to the bread.
Get that oven going at 375 °F. You'll need a loaf pan to put your dough in. Make sure you grease it. If you don't have a loaf pan, dig out a cookie sheet instead. Spray the cookie sheet with some cooking spray beforehand.
Sift out your flour into a large stand mixer. Listen to me when I say sift - I mean it. Sift the damn flour. Afterwards, add the remaining dry ingredients to the mixer and combine 'em on low power. While that's happening, crack open your beer. Slowly pour the beer into the mixer until you have a consistent looking ball of dough. It shouldn't stick to the sides of the mixing bowl.
Once your dough is ready, pour it into your loaf pan. Hah, pour - by that I mean get your hands in the bowl and pull out that dough. Put it in the pan or on your cookie sheet. Smooth it out some, make it look nice. Pro tip: some flour on your hands helps it keep the dough from sticking to you, but then you're just covered in flour.
Okay. Now melt your butter somehow - a microwave is fine. Pour the melted butter over the dough. No, you don't have to use all of it. It gives the bread a nice crusty top though. Shove your pan into the hot oven and bake it for an hour. When it's done, it should have a nice golden brown crust. Remove the pan from the oven and let it cool for at least 15 minutes before serving. Now you have bread. Enjoy.