Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Sourdough Rye Beer Bread ~ How to get rid of infected home brewed beer # 1

The beer my boyfriend and I made at home got infected. Very sad, I know. After weeks of waiting, we discovered the unpleasant surprise. It developed an off-flavor, which reminds us of green olives and most likely depends on dimethyl sulfide (DMS), it turned out. It could be either a bacteria or sunlight exposure, but we'll never know! However, that does not mean to me that I cannot use the beer at all. It would be even safe to drink but it does not taste very good. It reminds me of a martini somebody once prepared for me, with olive and garlic salt :-(. The carbonation is just right, the smell is even fine but it has this olive back taste, which definitely makes it undrinkable. I though that the olive back flavor may actually be good for cooking, adding that extra kick to beer cooking recipes.
First thing I tried of course was beer bread. The first recipe was a sort of a no-knead bread with baking soda, which given my dedication to sourdough for me was blasphemy! I should have remember of my no-knead curse, but I did not and here's the result. A terrible loaf, full of butter, crumbly and heavy like a stone. Surprising (or not?!) my boyfriend loved it... I have to say it was kind of tasty but with the same off-flavor that the beer has, and definitely wrong from a baker perspective.

Recipe follows for the second loaf I tried. The result was a fantastic, well risen, well developed loaf made with sourdough and of course, thoroughly kneaded. What was surprising for me is that the beer's olive off-flavor disappeared. I like to think that the good lactobacilli of my glorious starter fought the evil microorganism in the beer and destroyed the olive taste... well, maybe.

  • 120 grams of beer at room temperature
  • 4 g of salt
  • 18 g of brown sugar
  • 20 g of unsalted butter - melted and cooled
  • 520 grams of sourdough starter (100% hydration)
  • 130 g of rye flour
  • 190 g of AP flour
  • 100 g of bread flour
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp of sesame seeds (for topping, optional) 

  • Mix all the ingredients and let the dough rest for 30 minutes. Knead for 4-5 minutes until dough reaches medium development. Place in a slightly oiled bowl and let rise for 1 1/2 hour (should double in size). Delicately fold the dough and place it in a loaf pan and place it in the fridge overnight (up to 12 hours) to retard rising. It is possible to see some rising while in the fridge. Take the loaf out and proof for 45-60 minutes. Bake 375°F for about 40-45 minutes (internal temp 190°F).
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Anonymous said...

I was unable to determine from your recipe how long to keep it in the 'fridge. Also, the text states to "fold carefully" when placing it into the loaf pan. How did you fold it? (Just looking for more specifics before I attempt it). Thanks.


Matilda said...


Thanks for your suggestions, I will add the missing information in the recipe.

Good luck and feel free to contact me if you have any doubt while in the process.