Craft, stitchin' and sustainable living

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Beer-grain bread

Long time no blog! I had been hoping to blog about some embroidery that I did for my mum for her birthday recently, but, being the clever person that I am, I forgot to take a photo of the finished product before sending it off. So I am waiting on good old mum to send me a photo.

In the meantime, I would like to show you an experimental style of bread that I've been baking lately, with much success! It is beer-grain bread, using spent grain from the homebrew process. You see, boyfriend is a keen homebrewer, but usually after each brew kilos and kilos of used grain go in the bin. But I have found a way to incorporate it into the breadmaking process, making for extra yummy bread. Here is what the grain looks like after the brew...

I never use exact measurements when making bread, so my recipe is approximate. You can try it with a little less or more of anything and you will still get bread. Then you can experiment and make it taste the way you want. So, to make beer-grain bread, put in a bowl:

3 cups of flour
1 cup of spent beer grain
1 teaspoon of salt
3 tablespoons of sourdough culture (there are lots of how-tos on the net for making sourdough culture)
2 tablespoons of olive oil
2 teaspoons of dried yeast
approx 200 mls of water (add it slowly to the mix and check for consistency along the way)

Mix all the ingredients together until you get a fairly consistent wad of dough. Then turn it out on a board and knead it for about 15 mins. If the dough is so sticky it sticks to your fingers, you need a little more flour. If it's crumbly, add a little more water. You should end up with a ball of dough that looks something like this:

Lightly oil a bowl and pop the dough inside, cover it and let it sit for 2 hours, after which time it should have risen and will look like this:

Turn your dough out onto the board again and give it another quick knead, then shape it into a loaf shape. Pop it on your baking tray, and leave it to rise for another 45 minutes.

Now you are ready to bake your bread! Pop it into a 210 degrees C/410 degrees F oven for 30 mins. When you pull it out of the oven you will have a yummy, grainy loaf of bread!

If only this blog had smell-o-vision! The baked bread will put delicious smells in your kitchen, so be prepared to feel instantly hungry. When it is cool enough to slice and butter, do so...

and enjoy!

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