More use what you’ve got tonight… although not from the fridge, this time.

A few months back, I needed more space in the fridge to a pile of veg and leafy greens, so I took several bottles of beer out. I don’t drink beer, so these party leftovers had been lurking in the bottom of the fridge for ages. And then lurking out of the fridge.

The great thing about this baking challenge is that it’s got me thinking about what I can bake that can be part of dinner. And since it’s a cold winter’s night here in Sydney, soup and bread seemed just right! Soda bread is my go-to when time is tight, and I knew I’d seen similar breads made with beer. So when I made it home tonight, I turned the oven on, played with the kitten (which keeps climbing on the table when I sit here typing! Down kitty!) and then did a quick search for a suitable recipe. And I think I found it.

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I made this Lazy Irish Beer Bread with a bottle of Coopers Extra Strong Vintage Ale. The back label describes it as having “robust malt, hop and yeast characters” and I’d agree with that, especially the hoppy bitterness. Remember, I almost never drink beer, so real beer lovers probably wouldn’t mind that at all. It made a nice bread, great texture and perfectly cooked in about 40 minutes, but you can taste the flavours of the beer and next time I’d probably use something a little milder. Good thing there’s still two different bottles to use up, including a pale ale. This is so quick to whip up, I’ll definitely be making it again.

With lashing of butter (well, non-dairy spread) it was just right with a bowl of soup.

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Oh, and I should mention, I used a mixture of white and whole-meal self-raising flours. I think I’d do that again, too.

Happy baking, folks!

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