Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Using the whole hog.

With a cat purring near my head, I have a few minutes to sip some tea, read a bit and blog before tackling some cleaning project, having dinner and heading back to church for an evening meeting.

So today's brew-related reading was all about different spent grain bread recipes.  I'm pretty excited to use the grains in some breads, pizza doughs and perhaps even take a shot at making pretzels.

After multiple searches and sites...I found the one that will be my starting ground.  Thank you Erik from Top Fermented for this spent grain recipe.  What I really like about this recipe is that it's the style of bread making I've been using since I finally cracked open Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day.  A book my sister gave to me a few Christmases ago, but didn't seriously start using until I moved from Indiana to Pennsylvania.  I love the book.  It gives you a simple start, just mix everything and let it sit at room temp for a few hours...then you can bake a loaf from there, so pop it in the fridge and pull chunk out to bake on any day you'd like freshly baked bread.  So, this recipe is definitely doable...and will be my jumping off spot.

Jasmine posts a tasty recipe for spent grain bread What I like about her recipe is that she uses 3 cups of the spent grains in the dough.  She looked and looked (probably more than I did) for spent grain recipes that did more than just tip their hat to the grains.  She took the time to find and adapt recipes that incorporate the grains (ground) as some of the flour in the bread.  The bread on her site is a deep, looks very inviting and delicious!  I should say, though that I maybe have one bread pan....perhaps two?  I'm a big fan of the free form I may have to get some loaf pans at good will this weekend if this I'm going to try this recipe.

This is one of the earlier ones I found, but truth be told, it took the baker 30 hours....start to finish....and I guess I could try it, but that would take some time management on my part.  This spent grain bread also calls for bread flour.  Now, I'm still new to this whole bread baking thing....but I've stayed close to recipes that call for all purpose flour....or all purpose flour with a mix of whole wheat, rye and barley flours....Luckily I have this cheap-o grocery store where you can find some random funky ingredients at a fraction of the retail price. So, my flour collection is eclectic, but I have yet to try bread flour.  But, I should also draw attention to another link through's their Founders Pale Ale Batter Fried Macaroni and Cheese  Yes, you read that correctly....pale ale battered mac and cheese.  yum times a million!  And seeing as how I've taken a few cracks at homemade mac & may be time to take it one step further.  The good news is that this recipe starts with a Founders Porter Mac and can you possibly go wrong?  Now for those of us closer to the east keep it local, you'd have to pick your favorite porter and pale ale to incorporate into the recipe.  I'm becoming a bit of a beer snob, so I'd use the Dead Ringer IPA that we brewed last month....but that's just what makes me hoppy ;)  

I give a shout out to  Otownmommy's Blog.  She includes recipes for bread, pizza dough and pretzels.  Again, there seems to just be a tip of the hat to the grains, but what a fun way to jazz up pretzels!  And recently my bread dough has doubled as pizza dough, so I'd have no trouble bringing spent grains to my pizza nights.

Okay, so now I'm really hungry....and have zero dough in the fridge :(  But, I will be taking a bag of grains out of the freezer to thaw for Friday's bread adventure!

Until tomorrow . . .

PS....I did make it through the introduction of The Joy of Home Brewing...but the print was soooo tiny on the iPhone, that I'll wait for the hard copies to come on Friday before I hit that publication again. 

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