Experimenting with beer for beer bread and using brewers yeast.
Posted: 21 February 2010 01:35 AM   [ Ignore ]
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Hi there,

The first time I had ever tried (and heard of ) beer bread was my first trip to America in a backpackers . It came out like a self saucing pudding, and so I was eager to try out the recipe in the Bread Bible - and how different did it turn out!! smile

Since then I have been experimenting with various types of wheat beer. My brother has a micro brewery and he has been helping me with this. I was wondering if anybody else has done the same and could provide some feedback on what differences they have found?

I have used the brand “Erdinger” (a dunkle, or dark wheat beer) and also “Franziskaner” of which I have used a dunkle and a cloudy wheat beer which has a subtle banana taste. My brother recommended the cloudy wheat beer owing to its strong wheaty flavour in the bottle, but upon cooking it, the bread comes out with a much lighter flavour.

The Erdinger created a dark and flavoursome loaf, however, the only flour I could get my hands on for this was fairly ‘weak’ and kept collapsing upon baking when I used this type of beer - so I have to re-try with stronger flour. Upon using a strong flour and the Franziskaner dunkle, the bread didn’t collapse, but it also wasn’t as dark or quite a strong in flavour. Until I retry this though, I’m not sure whether it was the beer or the flour (and clearly I don’t have enough experience in baking to tell).

If anyone could share the experience making beer bread, along with any tips and hints, it would be much appreciated. I’m going to keep baking this bread till I nail it smile

Also, I was wondering if anyone knew anything about using brewer?s yeast in making bread?

Thanks heaps smile smile

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Posted: 21 February 2010 01:53 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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I’ve only made this with one kind of beer, so I can’t recommend any variations for you to try, but I can say that the beer is responsible for the color and flavor in this bread, not the flour strength (although, you are right, you should be using a stronger bread flour for the bread’s structure). I would say try the Erdinger again with bread flour since you liked the flavor and color before.

Also, since it sounds like you have access to spent grain, why don’t you also give Peter Reinhart’s spent grain bread a try (think it is in his whole grain book). I would love to try it, but don’t have access to spent grains.

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Posted: 21 February 2010 12:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Like Matthew, I don’t have easy access to yeast left over from the brewing process, but you’re on to something. It’s a common practice among German bakers to get their yeast from brewers - the foam from top-fermenting ales and also the sediment from bottom-fermenting lagers. Apparently, they have a folk expression there: “Beer is liquid bread!”

I’ve had fun experimenting with barley breads, among them a beer bread with roasted barley. I used a honey nut ale produced by a local micro brewery - wonderful!

Welcome to the forum, Sarinda! Do keep us posted on your experiments.

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Posted: 23 February 2010 07:02 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Carolita - this sounds too fantastic using micro brewery honey nut ale!

I can imagine how good it tastes.

As for “Beer is liquid bread” -  well I am sure this will be very popular with some…

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Posted: 26 February 2010 12:00 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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I don’t have any experience with using any of the left over beer products, but my future son in law brews his own beer so I’m going to visit with him about it.  We love to bake bread and this might be a something new to try.

My daughter and future sil consider themselves ‘original locovores’ since he hunts for all their meat and fowl, fishes in the summer, and they garden to have as many of their own fresh fruits and vegetables.  He has even been growing hops in hopes of using it in his beer, lol, now I can tell them they can start baking with their own yeast products!

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Linda R.

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Posted: 26 February 2010 12:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Sounds like an exceptional guy. Daughter has chosen well!

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Posted: 26 February 2010 12:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Thank you Paul.  They are pretty great kids and everyone is happy for the upcoming union. We love when we eat there, always good food and great beer!  I am making the cake for the wedding, so we have all been having fun with my ‘practice’ cakes.  This sight is always so helpful, and this thread is another piece of useful knowledge!

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Linda R.

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Posted: 08 March 2010 09:04 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Cool!  Thanks for the spent grain advice - my brother will be making a batch of beer soon and has promised me the left over?s, although it came with a warning: spent grain must be used soon after it has been removed from the batch of beer and kept at approx 50 degrees Celsius - lower than this it will create sulphur (rotten egg) smell and taste, high than this it will create an off, acidic flavour. This is yet to be trialled though! I’ll let you know what the result is when we try it out smile

Until I get my hands on it though, I’m going to spend some time researching it for myself.

There are a few brewers who have taken up an interest in mixing their hobby of brewing beer with bread making. http://www.aussiehomebrewer.com.au has some brewers posting some interesting bread recipes. Some use their knowledge of how yeast behaves rather than any cooking knowledge they have to bake bread. I haven’t tried any of these though.

Results of the beers I trialled so far: Erdinger had a stronger beer flavour, but also a more acidic taste, the other dunkle was more subtle but didn’t have the acidic after taste like the Erdinger, and the light wheat beer was slightly sweeter and took on very mild beer flavours (and even more mild banana flavours).

Thanks for the advice from everyone - it is great for some directoion.

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