So! Along with my newly(ish) discovered like of soup comes something similar for bread, not of the sliced loaf variety but of the more artisany tear and share type that you can dunk in aforementioned soup – I’m a total sucker for sourdough, or a nice boule, oven warmed and then slathered in butter. Making bread from scratch though hasn’t ever appealed, that whole kneading thing being a bit of a turn off, so when I found this recipe on The Slow Roasted Italian (via Pintrest or course!) that sounded delicious AND required nothing more than a good stir I knew I had to give it a go! Smart move on my part 🙂
Simple really is an understatement, in fact, this recipe is simpler than simple and another of those ones where the effort to taste ratio is crazy heavily biased towards taste (hurrah!) I can’t say I wasn’t a little suspicious about the total lack of kneading, as well as there being no yeast involved, but my loaf baked up very very nicely. Unsurprisingly, it was denser than a traditional loaf but it was perfect for purpose and absolutely hit the spot when buttered up and paired up with a big bowl of soup. I wouldn’t try and make a sandwich using it though…
Much, if not all, of the credit for the final flavour has to go to Hubby who was in charge of the beer selection – he went for an Innis & Gunn which is his go to beer for drinking and cooking, a lovely homegrown brew, and opted for their rum finish which was a little darker to get a punchier flavour. Totally the right choice! Hubby was also in charge of the cheese combo as I am rubbish when it comes to the stuff (cheese boards actually terrify me!) and went for a mild cheddar (arran) and an emmental which was plenty cheesy enough for me.
If I had any advice to give it would be to start with milder cheeses to figure out what they’re adding, and then experiment accordingly. And to have a go at making this bread. Go on… It’s SO easy, it would be a shame not to 😉
- 3 cups all purpose flour (363 grams)
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 1/4 cup shredded cheese (mix up to three different types)
- 340 ml/12 ounce beer (I&G was a wee bit over so we just poured it all in)
- 4 slices of cooked bacon, chopped
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- Get the oven on first and preheat to 175C/350F, then grease your loaf tin with butter and set aside. Cook your bacon up, I usually like mine crispy but for this I kept it quite “soft”, drain on kitchen towel and then snip or cut into wee pieces. Melt your butter and set aside.
- In your mixing bowl put the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Mix it all up with a whisk and then make a well in the middle. Into the well put the bacon, about 3/4 of the cheese and then pour in the beer. Stir with a wooden spoon until its all combined.
- And that’s it! Seriously! All that’s left to do is pour your mixture into your loaf tin, top with the rest of the cheese, drizzle over half the melted butter, and then pop it into the oven.
- Bake for 30 minutes.
- Take out the oven, drizzle the rest of the butter over the top, and then pop it back in again.
- Bake for another 25-30 minutes, by which time the cheese should be nicely browned on the top, and when you tap the loaf it should thump.
- Give it five minutes to cool a little and then pop the loaf out of the tin, it should literally fall out, and leave on a wire rack to cool. We gave it about 20 minutes and then scoffed it with a big bowl of soup. Epic!