Two bests combine, Bread and Beer!

Food, Recipe

A few days ago, my friend and I were discussing what to do on the weekend and the topic came to camping. She said that when she went camping with her family and friends, they always used to make beer bread around the campfire. 

 A Beer bread is a quick and simple bread that uses only three main ingredients, Sugar, beer and flour.  The yeast in the beer helps to turn the sugars in the flour into carbon dioxide and alcohol. In the baking process, the alcohol is then evaporated. Using Self-raising flour is good choice of flour as it is a mixture of both flour and a leavening agent so no additional leavening agent is needed.

 

 That got me thinking, two of my most favorite things to enjoy I can now make into one! So over the weekend I decided to make a beer bread of my own, using my favorite beer, a good old Black Label, and try it out! I must say, it is one the easiest breads to make, its as simply and 1,2,3! Here’s how to make it..

 Beer Bread

Ingredients:

500g Self raising flour

10ml salt

440ml beer

 Method:

1.     Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius and spray your baking pan ( 25 X 13 X 5.5cm ) with spray and cook.

2.     Mix your flour and salt well

3.     Add your beer and mix till well combined

4.     Add to your baking pan and bake for 45 – 50 minutes or until it is golden colour. You can also test it with a cake tester or knife to make sure that the knife comes out clean, then it will be cooked.

 *TIP: You can make your own self-raising by adding 1teaspoon baking powder to 100g plain flour



Black label Beer bread



And its as simply as that! You can play around with the recipe if you want, by adding dried herbs or other flavourings to the bread. The type of beers also gives a unique flavour for example; a stout or dark beer will give you a darker bread with more flavour. Your bread should be eaten straight away and can last for up to two to three days. 

Ways you can store your bread are simple. You can either freeze it, wrapping it tightly in plastic, which keeps it covered and also helps slicing when frozen as the plastic keeps the bread together. Another way is to store it in the fridge. The temperature in your fridge will be low which helps to delay any molds from forming, although not everybody likes to use this method. Another way is to place it in a paper bag and then wrap it in another plastic bag. This can help keep some of the moisture out.  When reheating your bread placing it in a preheated oven for a few minutes helps draw out moisture and then should be eaten immediately. 

 I hope you have as much fun with this easy recipe as I did.

 And that’s just my opinion…

Local Bliss, The Birdcage, Stellenbosch.

Local Restaurant

My friends and I, being culinary students are always looking to broaden our taste buds and try something new, local and exciting. Today we visited a local restaurant called the Birdcage. Located in a quaint, hidden yet easily accessible courtyard in the heart of Stellenbosch, making one feel as if you have left the busy town life and entered into a different world. Along side the Eerste river that runs through the town, it gives a unique and tranquil feel to the already beautiful, new shop. Owned by Shanel, Beate and Karin who started their establishment in January 2012.

The Birdcage offers a range of breakfast dishes, light lunches and all sorts of cakes and sweet things to indulge in. With its two-story setting, it is a place for people to meet and have friendly service. The feeling I experienced was a calm, friendly and welcoming one.

I ordered the French toast with blue cheese and bacon, costing only R45, it is one that I would definitely come back for. Salty, crisp bacon drizzled with a sweet syrup complimented the creamy blue cheese, a cappuccino that was a cup of heaven, which I order two of, by the way, set my morning off to a good start.

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So if you’re in the area and looking for something new, this will definitely tickle your taste buds.

For more details, you can visit their website/ blog:

https://birdcageteabar.wordpress.com

And that’s just my opinion…

Chilies, Hot or Not?

Food

IMG_6948This week’s ingredient is our good friend, the chili! Some people don’t like them as they can cause some serious damage if you don’t know what you’re doing with them or which ones to eat. Here’s some information you should know.

The chili is a fruit that come from the plant family, Capsicum. Originating from the new world countries of North and South America, many people use chilies for both food and medicine purposes, but lets just stick to eating them! You get different types of peppers, the most common ones include bell peppers, New Mexico green chili, birds eye chili, Habanero, and my favourite, the Jalapeno pepper.

Chilies, especially the red ones, contain large amounts of vitamin C and small amounts of carotene,a provitamin A. Yellow and green chilies, also contain small amounts of both, but the red ones are your best source.

Now, down to business! When selecting the chilies you wants, make sure that they are in the correct form in which you will be using them. Fresh or dried.

Dried chilies last longer as it is a means of preservation. They are usually used whole or are ground into a powder or paste form.

If you are using fresh chilies, their outer skins don’t break down during cooking. They can be used whole or in slices, depending on the size of your chili, for roasting in order to remove the skin and not cook the flesh underneath.

 TIP – Remove Skin on peppers – Set your oven on 200 degrees, add a little oil to the skin of your pepper and place in the middle of the oven. The skin will start to blister or char. Remove and place in a bowl, cover with cling wrap while still hot. The heat will help sweat off the skin and make it easier to remove it.

The good thing about them is that they are not always hot, like the bell pepper and when making them into other dishes like a chili jam, one can enjoy the flavour of the chili, without the burn. You either love it, or leave it!

And that’s just my opinion…!