Craft Beer and Food

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Spent Grain Bread in Five Minutes a Day

Avocado toast with tomatoes and my favorite bread knife

      Spent grain avocado toast with tomatoes and my favorite bread knife.

This recipe is a modified version of the The Master Recipe from The New Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day by Jeff Hertzberg, MD and Zoe Francois.

I highly recommend buying this book if you want to bake healthy bread using a no kneed method.  It is wonderful and also has a favorite recipe of mine for Gluten free Boule.  The gluten free boule gets raves when me make it whether you require gluten free or not.

Spent grains are what is left over when making beer.  If you brew beer and love bread you should try to make this the day of your brewing.  If you don’t make beer but know someone that does, have them save some for you.  I think making it with the grains on the day of brewing is ideal, but you could put them in the refrigerator and make within a week.  Just make sure the grains are at room temperature before using for your bread.


4 3/4 cups whole wheat flour 

3 cups white bread flour

1/4 cup vital wheat gluten

1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt

2 cups spent grains at room temperature

4 cups of warm water

1 1/2 tablespoons yeast

Trader Joe’s Everything but the Bagel Sesame Seasoning Blend or similar spice mix


Mix water and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer and whisk together. If you do not have a stand mixer, put it a large bowl and whisk.  You can work dough by hand just takes a little more time.

Put flours, vital wheat gluten and salt in a bowl and whisk together.  I use the container I store my dough in.  Now add spent grains to flour mixture and mix well so there are no large clumps.

Spent Grains                                                Mix flour, salt and spent grains

Add flour and grain mixture to the bowl with water and yeast.  Mix for 5 - 10 minutes on low if using the bread hook.  Occasionally scrapes sides and bottom of bowl to make sure all the ingredients are incorporated.  If mixing by hand make sure there are no clumps and the drough is slightly elastic.

Put into a 6 quart container, cover loosely and place in a warm spot for 2 hours to allow to rise.

My trick for this is to put 1 cup of water into a glass measuring cup.  Place it in microwave, cook on high for 2 minutes.  Place my dough into the microwave and let it sit for 2 1/2 hours or until the dough has risen to the top of the container.

When dough has risen, put it in the refrigerator with the lid on loosely and refrigerate over night.  

To bake, take out 1/4 to 1/3 of dough and form into a ball using flour on hands and work surface.  Place on parchment paper and allow to rise for 1 hour.  After 1 hour, place dutch oven in the oven and preheat for 20 minutes at 450’.  After 20 minutes, brush the loaf with water, sprinkle with Everything but the Bagel Sesame Seasoning Blend to coat and then slice the top.

Place the loaf in the dutch oven with the parchment paper. Bake for 45 minutes. 

Remove from oven, discard parchment paper and place on a rack to cool.

They say you should allow to cool before cutting, but honestly the smell of baking bread really gets me and I rarely can wait for it to cool completely.  So I usually let it cool a bit before cutting into it and slathering with butter.  My justification is that I need to taste it to make sure it is acceptable to serve.

Just a few notes:

If you do not have vital wheat gluten (available from Bob’s Redmill) decrease your water by 1/4 cup.

I used Costco Bread Flour, but any will do.

The whole wheat for this recipe was King Arthur Stone Ground White Whole Wheat Flour - Organic.  This is my new go to whole wheat flour, I really like the way it reacts to the other ingredients and gives a great texture to all the breads I have made with it.

This bread is a little denser than others I make, but still has a great texture without being stodgy. 

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Black Eyed Peas Curry with White IPA

New Year's Day Curry Black Eyed Peas & Beer Pairings

Having lived in the south as a child, I fell in love with black eyed peas.  I do not cook them enough, but try to honor the tradition of of including them in my New Years Day menu.  I knew that it was a a tradition in the southern United States to eat them for good luck on the first day of the year, but after some quick research I discovered the trading goes back thousands of  years.  According to Wikipedia,  the "good luck" traditions of eating black-eyed peas at Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, are recorded in the Babylonian Talmud (compiled circa 500 AD).

This year, rather than a traditional southern US dish, an Indian curry meal seemed appropriate with a little beer pairing test.   On the menu was a recipe I adapted called Lobhia (blackeyed peas) Masala, Naan and three beers.

The three beers we tested were Anchor Summer Beer (Anchor Brewing Co.), Accumulation White IPA (New Belgium Brewing) and Inversion IPA (Deschutes Brewery).   My favorite pairing with this dish was the Accumulation White IPA followed by the Inversion.  Although it is often recommended a wheat beer pairs well with the curries, I did not find this to be the case.

Black Eyed Pea Masala


2 cans lobia/black eyed beans
½ inch piece ginger chopped
4 cloves of garlic chopped
1 medium sized onion chopped
1 green chili chopped
½ cup chopped coriander leaves
1 can diced tomatoes
1 bay leaf
1-2 cloves
½ inch piece of cinnamon
3-4 tsp Garam Masala powder
½ tsp turmeric powder/haldi
¼ tsp red chilli flakes
1 cup vegetable broth
2 tbsp oil


In a large sauce pan, heat oil.
Add the whole spices, when they begin to sizzle add the onions.
Fry the onions till they become transparent. Now add the chopped ginger-garlic-chili. Fry till the raw smell of the ginger and garlic disappear.  Add powder spices and cook about 1 minute.  Add the tomatoes and cook for 3 minutes.
Now add the soaked black eyed peas, salt and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil and then simmer on low for 30 minutes. time to cook.  Garnish Lobia Masala with chopped coriander leaves. Serve with rotis or rice.

Serving size: 4

Monday, January 27, 2014

Beer Braised Short Ribs - Crockpot Recipe

It is winter in most parts of the northern hemisphere and a good time for easy comfort food.  I had some grass fed short ribs in my freezer that seemed to be just right for a crockpot recipe.

I combined a few recipes and this is what I came up with.

  1. Do not use an IPA for this recipe.  We used Fat Tire Amber Ale, but a dark, low hop beer or stout would be fine.  
  2. The gravy was a little heavy.  I would either omit it or make a beer based demi-glace.  I will post a recipe for this when I have created it.
  3. Shorten the cooking time to 6 hours on low.
Recipe Ratings
To help our readers, we will now rate the recipes on a scale of 1 -5 for ease, time and flavor.  The cost of the meal will be scored with $ symbols.

2 Recipe Ease (1 is easiest - 5 is most complicated)
5 Time to Cook (1 is less than 1 hour - 5 is all day)
3 Flavor  (1 least desireable - 5 a favorite recipe I would make again tomorrow)
$ Cost  ($ is less than $20 for 4 servings - $$$$ expensive, but worth the treat)

Crock Pot Beer-Braised Beef Short Ribs

1/4 c. all purpose flour
1/2 t. kosher or sea salt
1/2 t. freshly ground black  pepper
1/2 t. smoked paprika
1/2 t. dried mustard
2.5 lbs. boneless beef short ribs
2 T. olive oil
1 large onion, sliced
4 carrots cut in 1 inch pieces.
2 cloves garlic, minced
Couple of sprigs fresh thyme
12 oz. full-bodied beer (may substitute beef broth)
2 T. flour
3 T. water


1. Combine flour, salt, pepper, paprika and dried mustard. Dredge ribs in flour mixture and brown in olive oil in a medium skillet.

2. Place onions, carrots and garlic in the crock pot and top with browned ribs. Pour beer (or broth) over ribs.

3. Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours.

4. Remove ribs, carrots, thyme and onions and place on a serving platter. Cover with foil to keep warm.

5. In a small bowl, whisk together flour and water and add it to the beef juices in the crock pot. Set to high and stir until juices thicken into gravy. Pour gravy over ribs and serve.  

Serve over garlic mashed potatoes and your favorite vegetable.