In past St. Patrick’s days, I would make quick Guinness beer bread. This year my wife bought me a Fourneau Bread Oven for my birthday, as a result, she gets the recipe updates, not me. She forwarded this one for St. Patrick’s Day for our Sunday dinner with the family. I, kind of, followed their recipe.
Karl’s Dubliner Guinness Bread
1 cup Guinness Beer, warm
1 tsp. active dry yeast
2 ½ cups bread flour, separate uses
½ cup plain yogurt
½ tsp. Kosher salt
1 tsp. vegetable oil
¾ cup Kerry Gold Dubliner cheese, shredded
1. Early in the morning or the day before you plan to bake, stir the yeast and sugar into the beer and set it aside for 15-20 minutes to proof.
2. Put one cup of flour in a large bowl and stir in the beer until there are no lumps in the mix.
3. Cover the bowl with a damp cloth and put the sponge in a warm place to ferment.
4. Several hours before baking stir in a second cup of flour and the salt.
5. Dust a clean smooth surface with flour and knead the dough until smooth and firm, 10-15 minutes.
Tip: You will be using at least a half cup of flour more.
6. Clean your bowl and add the oil.
7. Wipe the bowl with the top of your dough ball and then turn it over in the bowl.
Tip: This oils the top of your dough ball and helps keep it from drying out.
8. Cover the bowl with a damp cloth and set it in a warm place to rise.
9. Knock the dough down and divide it into two portions.
10. Roll each portions into a ball and return one to the bowl.
11. Use a rolling pin to roll out the first portion of dough into a 12” x 12” rectangle.
12. Scatter half of the shredded cheese over ¾ of the surface of the dough.
Tip: Leave a 3” x 12” stripe of the dough free of cheese.
13. Starting on the opposite side, tightly roll up the dough.
Tip: As you are rolling, fold in the two outside edges of the dough. This keeps the cheese from using out the ends of the roll.
14. Pinch the seam of the roll along its length and set the loaf seam side down on a well dusted sheet.
Tip: You may dust your sheet with flour, but I have found coarsely ground corn meal to be the best way to keep your dough from sticking. You want to use a lipless cookie sheet. You will be raising your loafs on the sheet and before transferring them to a peel.
Note: If you do not have a Fourneau Bread Oven, you may bake the loaf directly on the cookie sheet or use the sheet as a peel to transfer the loaf to a baking stone.
15. Roll out and form your second loaf.
16. Put the Fourneau Bread Oven in the oven and a baking stone on the lower shelf.
Tip: The heavy cast iron of the Fourneau oven and the stone retains the heat of the oven, when you open the door to put the loaves in.
17. Preheat the oven to 500º F.
18. Cover the loaves with a damp cloth and let the rise for 30-40 minutes.
19. Put the first loaf in the Fourneau oven and bake the loaf for 15 minutes, with the hatch closed.
Tip: If you are using a baking stone or just a cookie sheet you may bake both loaves together.
Note: The one disadvantage of the Fourneau oven is that you can only bake one medium sized loaf at as time. Of course, if it were larger it would be too heavy for many people to lift.
20. Transfer the first loaf to the baking stone and continue baking it for 3-5 more minutes.
Tip: Check the loaf to see of the bottom of the bread is close to burning.
Note: When you have removed the first loaf from the Fourneau oven, you may put the second loaf in and close the hatch to overlap the baking time.
21. As the loaves finish baking, transfer them to a wire rack to cool for 15-20 minutes.