Banana Beer Bread

When I need to get rid of brown bananas, I think banana bread. When I think bread,
I think beer. Why not banana beer bread? What a lesson to be learned.I found this recipe for Vegan Banana Beer Bread here. Is beer really vegan though? I mean, I guess it’s more vegan than the milk and eggs it replaces in the banana bread recipe, but still, I’m skeptical.

No matter. On to baking…

I’m not usually this organized. But the fact that I could comfortably fit all seven ingredients,
plus the dishes for making this recipe, onto my tiny little counter for one photo shoot, is impressive.
Of course, the first step is setting the oven to 350 degrees.
Then mix the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking soda and salt) in one bowl.
Into the second bowl goes the other ingredients: half a stick of butter…
…and a mashed banana. The browner they are, the mushier they are,
so they’re easily destroyed with a fork. Good aggression relief, too.
Next comes the best part: das Bier. All I have in my fridge, still, is
Great Lakes Christmas Ale (stocked up for my own Christmas in July.)
I take several swigs off the top, then pour about 3/4 of a bottle into the dough.
Stir it up and stick it in.
Only one empty bowl to clean while the bread bakes for an hour.

Recipe for Banana Beer Bread

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 Tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, melted
  • 2 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 bottle beer

Results of Banana Beer Bread Recipe:
Apparently, as the original recipe states, the type of beer does matter. I’ve seen other similar recipes call for dark beer specifically, where this one recommended wheat beer. Christmas Ale is not a wheat beer, in fact, it’s pretty darn dark. A little too dark for this recipe, I think, even though I didn’t put in the entire bottle it called for.

I had problems with this baking evenly – which very well could be blamed in part on an oven that heats unevenly. But the crust of this bread was getting crispy while the insides just stayed gooey.

Once the insides settled, they tasted good, but I just couldn’t proudly present a loaf that looked burnt. So I cut off the too-done bottom and flipped the bread over to serve. It seemed more like a coffee cake this way, but still a little heavy on the beer — and this is me talking.

Recommendations for next time: Use a light beer, and no more than 3/4 of a bottle of it. Worth another shot.

Wednesday’s Work-From-Home Menu

This morning, because I was working from home, I had time to accompany the main squeeze to breakfast at The Shore Restaurant, which we’ve tested and proved to be the best place to grab breakfast in Lakewood. I had the usual: two eggs, over easy, with wheat toast and bacon, and my date shared his french toast.

And then this evening, because I was working from home, I had time to start cooking the supper we craved before the hunger breaking point — you know, past the point of starving, when you forego the food prep and start proposing a drive to Five Guys. So I made sloppy joes and chipotle-seasoned sweet potato french fries, washed down with some Great Lakes Christmas Ale — in glasses rimmed with brown sugar, of course. This, I think, is the ideal meal for a game night, especially this time of year.

Great Lakes Brewing Christmas Ale beer

Garden-Fresh Stir-Fry

I came home from Indiana last weekend loaded. The haul I brought back with me included:
2 dozen brown eggs from my grandpa’s neighbor
5 lb. ground beef from the local butcher
2 cases Fat Tire, newly offered by select Indiana liquor stores (still not available in Ohio)
2 bottles Merlot made by my cousin
and from my sister and brother-in-law’s garden: basil, green peppers, red onions, yellow onions, garlic, zucchini, cucumber, tomato

With the exception of the Fat Tire (which, don’t get me wrong, is good no matter what), it was refreshing to finally have so much fresh, homegrown food stuff. So I got right down to eating it, starting with this Garden Stir Fry:

Warm 2 Tbsp olive oil in skillet over low-medium heat.
Start chopping any desired veggies. I used red onions, scallions, garlic, zucchini and green peppers.
Add onions and zucchini first. When they start to get soft, add everything else.
Sprinkle with garlic salt and freshly ground pepper.
Serve over white rice prepared according to directions.