September 24, 2012

Jalapeno-cheddar beer bread

Homemade bread is always a treat, but it can be a long process to make and requires a lot of forethought. Recently, I tried to make a sourdough starter. It was doing really well for the first three days, but then on day four it fell flat and never came back to life.... I haven't tried to make a new one yet, but I will soon. Anyone have any suggestions for making and keeping sourdough starter alive?

This bread came along because we have so many peppers of all varieties (green, purple, jalapeno, poblano, etc.) and so many tomatoes from our family's large crops this year. I was making a pot of chili with lots of peppers and fresh tomatoes and wanted some sort of bread to go with it (but didn't have the time to make a yeast bread before dinner). I saw this recipe on Sumptuous Spoonfuls and knew that the combination of jalapenos, cheese, and beer would be absolutely perfect with the chili. I adjusted the recipe a bit and below is the recipe I used. The jalapenos we've had have been on the mild side, so I didn't find the bread to have much heat. However, you can adjust the amount to your taste. I used Saranac pumpkin ale in my bread because we LOVE our fall beers around here. The beer went well in the bread, but you can use any kind of light to medium beer you have on hand (but make sure you like the flavor).

Jalapeno-cheddar beer bread
2-1/2 cups spelt (or whole wheat) flour
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons granulated sugar, preferably unbleached
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
about 1/3 cup seeded and finely chopped jalapenos (about three jalapenos)
4 oz. white cheddar cheese, shredded
1 (12-oz.) bottle of pumpkin ale, or other beer of your choice
1 egg white, lightly beaten

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. If you don't have a baking stone, line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Whisk together the flours, sugar, salt, and baking powder in a large bowl. Mix in the jalapenos and cheese. Slowly pour in the beer. Stir until almost combined (it will look/feel a little dry). 

Gather the dough into a ball. Knead for about 1 minute on a lightly floured surface. Shape into a round. Place on the baking stone or lined baking sheet. Brush the top with the egg white.

Bake for approximately 50-55 minutes, until the top is golden and an inserted cake tester comes out clean (I say cake tester because you need to reach the middle where it may still be gooey).

Let sit for about 5 minutes, then slice and eat. 

What was I cooking one year ago?: buckwheat pancakes
Two years ago?: spinach and artichoke pizza


  1. OH WOW. This bread looks incredibly awesome! With probably just the right amount of heat :)

  2. Your loaf looks wonderful.

  3. Peppers, they complement everything!

  4. What a wonderful bread! It looks nice and crusty on the outside! Great flavors and I love the texture beer gives bread.

  5. I love the idea of this recipe, and I have the beer and the jalapeƱos in my fridge right now!

  6. I need to bookmark this! I looove jalapenos!

  7. Your bread looks delicious, nothing can beat up the smell of baking bread! You can try at king Arthur's site to see how they make the sourdough! You may get some ideas!

  8. Jalapenos, cheddar, and pumpkin ale?? This sounds perfect!!

  9. Wow! This bread looks & sounds very interesting with lovely combinations! I've never bake bread before , hopefully I have the courage to make one soon.

  10. This jalapeno and cheddar combination seems very lovely! Your addition of pumpkin ale into your bread seems very interesting.


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