I was out of town for work most of last week, so I wasn't prepared to make anything particularly involved for dinner last night. However, I did have all the ingredients for potato soup on hand. Before I sliced up potatoes, carrots and celery for the soup, I mixed up a loaf of beer bread and put it in the oven.
Beer bread is a recent addition to my baking repertoire, but now that I have come to appreciate it, I'm not sure how I managed to overlook it for so long. It's only three ingredients: self-rising flour, sugar and a can of beer. Because it doesn't need to rise, you can mix it up and bake it for less than an hour and you end up with a lovely loaf that's kind of a cross between bread and US-style biscuit.
The first loaf of beer bread that I made a few weeks ago contained Boulevard Brewing Company Tropical Pale Ale. It's not a fave of mine for drinking, but it added an interesting fruity, hoppy edge to the bread that worked out well with the vegetable minestrone I'd made at the time.
This time I used a Wasatch Apricot Hefeweisen that had been pushed to the back of our mini fridge since last year. You might be sensing a pattern here regarding the types of beer I keep on hand. The other options were Bud Light and Coors Light that someone left here (too boring) or Boulevard Jam Band Berry Ale (too pink). Everything else I have is high ABV, fancy, highly flavored and oversized, so I'll be saving those for drinking.
Anyway, last night's batch of beer bread was very nice with just a hint of fruity flavor. It was pretty much perfect when buttered and served with the potato soup. I have enough leftovers of both the bread and the potato soup for at least a lunch or two this week.
What's your favorite recipe that it took you a while to discover or appreciate?