My wife has introduced our family to a new and wonderful food. It is warm, buttery, and made with alcohol: The three items necessary for any culinary work of art. Fresh from the oven, and smothered in melted butter, this delicacy melts in your mouth with a sweetness that can only be described as candy.
It is Beer Bread. Perhaps this is nothing new to you. Perhaps you were raised on your mother’s beer bread. But for me, it is a wonderful, fresh experience.
I was raised in a home that was beer-less. The production of any bread, stew, chili, or pot roast with alcoholic beverage was unheard of. Communion was a grape-juice-only affair. New Year’s Eve? I would like Sparkling Catawba, thank you. No reason to put temptation in the path after midnight or on the altar of God.
But now I know about beer bread and all those years of prohibition are past me (God forgive me).
Combine a couple cups of self-rising flour with a few tablespoons of sugar and a bottle of beer. Mix until sticky and dump into a well-buttered bread pan. Throw it in a 355 degree oven for 55 minutes. Pour two tablespoons of melted butter over the top. Allow it to bake for five minutes more and you are knock, knock, knockin’ on heaven’s door (Eric forgive me).
Now, I must admit, as a father and a husband, I want to keep temptation away from my family. I certainly understand my parents’ concerns. This is why I want to teach my children to eat their beer bread responsibly.
My 11-year-old, as he slowly enjoyed his first slice of this new food group asked, “What kind of bread is this? It’s WONDERFUL!” We explained that he was eating something new…beer bread. As he chewed, his eyes closed slowly and his face took on a look of sheer ecstasy. After a few minutes, he opened his eyes again. A huge smile spread across his face. He looked to his mother. “Is it wrong that this beer bread makes me feel so happy?”
No son, it is not. Now give me your car keys.