No experience kneaded

O HAI, it’s Punday Monday!  Har har har.

No, but seriously: after an afternoon spent trying to rid my apartment of aphids, courtesy of the Christmas tree*, I was a bit of a space-case when I finally made it to the grocery store.

And although “bread” was the first thing on my list, I somehow forgot to buy it.  Which left me mourning the fact that I would not, in fact, be having a grilled-cheese sandwich for dinner, as planned.

Unless I could make bread.

Could I?

Don’t you need those little packets of yellow powder that smell like wet socks?  And isn’t it like…a lot of work?  With kneading and punching involved?

Not if you have beer.  (And…of course I have beer!)  Somehow I remembered Rachel’s post on beer bread from a while back and looked it up.  No yeast.  No kneading.  Five ingredients.  Alright, then.  Maybe even a total bread virgin like me could handle this.

Oh yeah.

I’m not going to lie when I say that this was one of the easiest things I’ve ever made.  And completely and totally delicious. 

Uhh…what store bought bread? This is way batter than anything the Whole Foods bakery has to offer.  Ba-dum-bum.

Thank you, thank you.  I’ll be here all week.

*Yes, gross.  Gross gross gross.  Apparently they are harmless, and should vamoose now that I’ve doused their tree-house in (organic + pet-safe) bug-killing soap.  But….they look like tiny spiders.  Not a fan.  At all.  Time to rethink that whole real versus fake tree thing.

Today’s EAT: I got the grilled cheese I’d been craving all day!

Beer bread is a little more dense, so I didn’t want to try to fry it.  Open-faced under the broiler was perfect.  I suppose you could add a tomato if you’re in to that sort of thing (I’m not) or some bacon (definitely in to it, but that’s another forgotten purchase from today’s distracted grocery trip).

Plus a huge salad and a glass of wine = simple, flavorful, fresh dinner. Tres bien.

Today’s DRINK: I don’t normally buy $4 Cabs.

Fairly or not, I tend to give the bolder reds a wide berth when it comes to gambling on a cheap bottle.  Cheapo Pinot?  Sure, all the time.  Cheapo Cab or Zin?  Ehh…that’s just asking to be disappointed.

This Three Wishes Cabernet Sauvignon was on sample at Whole Foods, though, and I never would have pegged it for a $4 bottle when I tried it in the store.  Of course, I added a bottle to my cart.  Opening it at home tonight, I decided on first sip that it definitely needed to breathe a little.  And thirty minutes later, it was quite enjoyable.

Today’s RUN: 3 quick ones on the treadmill.  I just…eh.  Didn’t feel like running today.  I told myself I had to go at least 20 minutes, and then I decided to just finish off that third mile.  23 minutes and change.

Today’s QUESTION: Are you a bread baker?  Do you have a favorite recipe? Please share!  I’m very excited to explore bread-making a little more.  And I might even be willing to deal with kneading and yeast. 🙂

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34 responses to “No experience kneaded

  1. Definitely not a bread baker, but I think I might be able to do beer bread? I’m a frequent purchaser of $6.99 Malbec. It’s not terrible.

  2. ewwwwwwwwwwwww aphids! i worked at a garden store for 4 years and yuck. i’m not a bread baker. mostly because that seems too domestic for me. i’m not at that level 😉

    and i say bake a cinnamon raisin loaf and then mail it to me 😀

  3. I love beer bread! Also, love that it doesn’t require planning ahead for kneading and rising time.

  4. Look at you baking bread. 😉
    Well I’m not a bread baker, but you know Dan is. He makes all kinds now. He’s quite great at it too.
    Here is a no knead bread recipe I blogged about back in February.
    http://lovelaughterfriendship.blogspot.com/search?q=no+knead+bread

  5. I am totally making this bread tonight! I’ve never baked bread and I’ve been known to mess up a recipe or two (or twenty), but I feel inspired! Thanks.

  6. I LOVE baking bread… and I have a bunch of recipes in my blog! My favorite recipe EVER is the foccaccia from Dorie Greenspan’s “Baking from My Home to Yours” (which I’ve blogged about too)

    That grilled cheese looks AWESOME

  7. Your puns are great. Beer bread is great. I’m a big fan of quick breads — the density is so satisfying. Sorry to hear about the aphids… maybe release some ladybugs on their asses. Don’t they eat aphids? Or something?

  8. My bread maker is my best friend. So so so easy. Any plans for a trip out west? We would love to see you!

    • Which one do you have? Like an actual machine?

      We are headed to IL for Christmas this year. I definitely want to get out west at some point – although I’m sure I owe the fam a visit first and foremost. But I’d love to see if I can get out there while you and Dre are both there!

  9. STFU. I made beer bread yesterday, too. Except I made mine at 9 a.m. and drank the leftover beer in the bottle. i am rebel. My recipe is pretty similar, but with two cups of flour and .5 cups oat bran. You can fiddle around with it. And by fiddle I mead mast…er the art of beer bread baking.

  10. Hahaha, I love your title. I’ve never made bread before, but that looks easy and delicious and now I want to try. Also, you have provided an excellent example of why I always have fake trees. Hope you have a good day, Shelby!

  11. This bread looks delicious. Anything that you can make that leaves you with left over beer to drink is a win in my book.

  12. Last Christmas I made beer bread for each aunt and uncle in my family. Try using different beers with mix-ins that match the beer flavors- good stuff. I actually just tried that wine as well and was really surprised!

  13. What kind of beer did you use?!?

    I’ve only ever made banana bread and strawberry bread and they are almost impossible to screw it up.

    PS: I saw someone buying the Ed Hardy wine last night and I almost had to say something. That shit should be illegal.

    • I used one of the Anchor Christmas Ales, a.k.a. the Six Pack That Never Ends.

      Have you seen the Ed Hardy beers? Criminal, for sure. I saw an older guy checking one out a couple of weeks ago and I could tell he had no idea what the brand was and was just intrigued by the garish packaging. I almost said something too.

  14. I don’t like messing with yeast, either. It seems like a lot of work. I’ve done the pizza dough with beer… most likely the same you did. But rolled out.
    I didn’t mind it at all! And it was dense, which is generally how I prefer my bread anyways…

  15. I’m a bread baker. I was totally against it at first due to the kneading part, but after Chris (long-time bread baker) introduced me to my stand mixer with dough hook, I realized that bread baking is a lazy girl’s activity. I even got all fancy and made cinnamon swirl bread a few times!

  16. I can’t comment on the food because my tummy is still in a bit of ick mode, but…APHIDS SUCK. I just had to toss out 2 of my most unique orchids after Thanksgiving because I came back from a weekend trip and they were infested. Those little bugs are creepy as hell. I feel your pain.

    • They are nasty little things! At first I thought they were spiders, or ticks, or *shudder* bedbugs. Thankfully Google was able to clear that one up pretty quickly (what did people do before the internet?) but I spend a solid hour certain that I was going to have to dispose of all of worldly belongings and fumigate the apartment. 🙂

      Bummer about the orchids. Hope you feel better soon!

  17. That bread looks amazing. I also wanted to tell you that I commented and read your comment on Caitlin’s blog and I just wanted to come here and commend you. That was a very well written and respectful comment and in my opinion was spot on. I loved everything you said and I totally agree. I just wanted to say thank you for making strong points especially when it goes against the grain in the blog world! You rock.

  18. I make a similar beer bread recipe quite often. The recipe I use includes butter that makes the crust the best part. Crunchy buttery crust. Mmmmm. I also love how the flavor varies depending on the beer you use.

    The only yeast required product I have successfully conquered is an easy pizza dough recipe. I posted a link to it in my blog yesterday. Minimal kneading and uses a food processor.

    Ed Hardy has wine??!?! I saw the beer and about passed out. REALLY Ed Hardy? Your time is up. In the words of Rachel Wilkerson, sorry I’m not sorry if that offends anyone.

  19. I’ve made bread in the past and it’s usually yummy, but yeast and rising times always discourage me. I know you don’t like canned pumpkin, but my fav recipe is a pumpkin-cinnamon swirl bread that I made last year. It’s more like regular bread with a subtle hint of pumpkin vs. a sweet bread.

    • Haha! I don’t mind canned pumpkin when it’s baked in to something. Just when it’s straight out of the can – it reminds me of orange cat food 🙂 Pumpkin-cinnamon-swirl sounds fantastic though!

  20. lifeisbeachykeen

    I’ve never made bread. The very idea scares me. I’m intimidated by things like that. I don’t like making new things If I think there is a chance that I’ll fail miserably at it. Lame, right? I do make my own pizza dough, and i’ve only jacked that up once, but i’ve redeemed myself. Hm, I could try out some bread.

  21. Good choice on the beer bread — it’s SO easy and so yummy! Love the melty cheese idea…need to try this ASAP!

  22. I’m not a bread maker but only five ingredients and no kneading, count me in!

  23. I’m glad you ventured to the potentially-sock-smelly-cooking side! I’ve had that bread and it rocks. In fact, seeing this reminds me HOW much it rocks and now I know what I’m making with my soup tonight.

    Since any easily-gotten bread here in Trinidad has the texture of a running shoe insole, I’ve made myself get over my fear of bread-baking. Once you go bake, you never go back (oh, that was awful, wasn’t it?). I’ve always been ok with making cornbread, but I’ve made pitas, focaccias, and loaves lately–all that kneading is so much fun, even on low-aggro days!

  24. That’s it – baking beer bread tonight. Guess I’d better buy a ‘better’ beer – my husband really enjoys his PBRs 🙂

  25. I used to rock the challah baking back in the dizzle and specialized in the chocolate chip challah…what what? carbs and chocolate all in one convenient food, well yes I shall.

    I have recently become addicted to home-made soft pretzels. And I’ve been drinking more beer to justify baking and eating them. Like the perfect bar food but in sweats and with cats.

  26. Pingback: This feels rather familiar | eat, drink, run

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