African Safari Beer Bread

Fritz and I got married on May 30, 2009 (a year and a half ago yesterday!).  For our rehearsal dinner, the Zietsmans threw an “African safari”-themed dinner for all the relatives and friends that had gathered ’round for the occasion.  I still dream about that lamb roast…

But that’s besides the point.  One of the fantastic ideas they had was to buy me a safari-themed cookbook (A Kitchen Safari) that everyone signed to give us their best wishes.  Of the best signatures:

 Lauren and Fritzy,

You guys are pretty much the best thing that’s ever happened to me (and each other, I guess) further proving the perfection of our triangle.  I love you both!

Jenny

Dearest Lauren & Boeta,

May your home be filled with love, blessings, hugs, smiles, memories, and good food (by Lauren), good cabinets (built by Fritz), & most important…the two of you, side-by-side!  I am so overjoyed to see the two of you tie the knot!  Love, unconditionally…

Eber

La and Fritz

I am without words…too much lamb.

Grandpa Charles

So perfect for reminiscing.  As I was paging through this book a few days ago, I was re-inspired about how much I love everything South African, and found a lot of recipes I want to try.  The first one I tried was a tremendous success–African Safari Beer Bread.  That’s right, beer.  And weirdly enough, I actually had some in the fridge.

African Safari Beer Bread (from A Kitchen Safari, called “Camping Bread”)

  • 750 ml bread flour (a little over 3 C–I used 1 1/2 C whole wheat flour and 1 1/2 C all-purpose flour)
  • 5 ml salt (1 t)
  • 5 ml ground cumin (1 t)
  • 15 ml baking powder (1 T)
  • 2 ml bicarbonate of soda (1/2 t–what a great name for baking soda)
  • 1 x 340 ml can of beer (1 1/5 C or 11 1/2 oz)
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 5 ml rock salt (1 t, coarse sea salt)

Pre-heat the oven to 160 degrees C–for us Americans, that’s 320 degrees F.  Mix together the dry ingredients (not the rock salt–that’s for the top later).  Add in the beer.  You can drink the rest if you want…it was a little too early for me.  Oh, and I hate beer.

The dough will be firm and a bit sticky.  Shape the dough and place it into an oiled bread pan.

Using a pastry brush (or your husband’s silicone grilling baster brush), spread beaten egg over the top and sprinkle with the coarse salt.

Here’s the best part–it doesn’t have to rise!  Bake in the middle rack of the oven for an hour.  Turn out and cool.  The book suggests serving the bread with apricot preserves and mature cheddar cheese–a combo which I’ve found to be quite popular with my favorite South Africans. 

The bread is salty and has a perfect touch of cumin.  Fritz took one bite, look puzzled, and took a second–then proclaimed it was “his favorite bread ever”.  The crust is dee-vine.  The egg and salt brushed on top give it almost a homemade soft-pretzel feel, and the bread underneath is moist and not too dense.

By far the fastest bread I’ve ever made.

I have a lot of hope for the rest of the recipes in this book!  I’m going to try a second one now for the married group meeting tomorrow: granola muffins with raspberry preserves.  Fritz might faint when he finds out–that man loves granola. 

And eventually I’ll find some time to study.

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4 Comments

Filed under Breads

4 responses to “African Safari Beer Bread

  1. Hannah

    Can you make this with dark beer (aka Guiness Stout)? Or maybe chardonnay bread…. hmmm…..
    ps Grandpa Charles is the best!

    • I actually think it’s probably SUPPOSED to be made with a dark beer, but beggers can’t be choosers 🙂 It’s rare enough to have any beer in the fridge 😉 And I’m thinking chardonnay cookies? yummmmmm

  2. Hannah

    Did you use two or three cups of flour?

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