flat beer? make bread!

If I die, arrest this loaf for involuntary manslaughter, but let it plead down to a lesser included offense:

The genesis of this loaf can be pinpointed to July, when I went on a kidless mini-break and BackupMom held a BBQ at my house.  A pan of leftovers sits in the fridge commemorating the event (ewww), but that’s not the point.

During the BBQ, the partygoers stored lots of beer in my outdoor mini-fridge and drank it all.  Except one.  Which I found, open but otherwise unmarred, when I got a yen to make Breadtopia’s version of Jim Lahey’s no-knead bread featured in the New York Times…but had no beer in the house.

It’s been in a closed environment.  Alcohol is a preservative.  We won’t die when we eat bread made with it, right?


Anyway, I strained it through a coffee filter, so that did exactly fuck-all to the brew it should be fine.  The dough behaved appropriately and didn’t emit any satanic chuckling during shaping.  Life insurance is paid; will is written; cremation, inurement niche and urn have been purchased; I won’t even feed it to my children (first).  Moral of the story: If you find yourself with a random, aged beer that you don’t want to drink, give it a Viking Funeral in your baked goods.

After Action Report

This loaf is lovely, but heavy; 681g baked weight, of a 728g dough weight.  I should have left it in the oven for another 15 minutes.  It’s currently sitting in the oven soaking in the residual heat.  When I get home, I’ll weigh it again, see if I can snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.  Nothing wrong with the recipe, which called for:

  • 15oz flour
  • 10oz liquid
  • vinegar, salt, yeast in small portions

My dough was more anal precise, using gram weights and scaling out 30g per ounce of liquid rather than 28g which would be a dry ingredient weight.  The other difference was I let the dough rise for 75 minutes in an ambient temp of 65 degrees.  The dough really should have had another 45 minutes to rise and 15 minutes to bake.  Dang time crunch.


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