Here it is March 1st already! That means today is the first day of my annual blog-stravaganza leading up to St. Patrick’s Day on March 17th. Yup…I will be publishing one Irish-y recipe every day until March 17th. This is the 3rd year that I have done this and if you are looking for some tasty Irish-y dishes for St. Patrick’s Day, I hope you will follow along here each day. But I should also mention that I have quite a back catalog of Irish-y recipes from the past years. Just click on Runcible Eats/Recipes at the top of the navigation bar and scroll down to St. Patrick’s Day to see them. (or just click here and scroll down)
This year we’re going to get underway with a great recipe for a quick beer bread using… you guessed it – Guinness! Now you know that a bread made with Guinness is going to be fantastic. Cooking anything with Guinness just seems to improve it whether it be a hearty beef stew or a rich chocolate cake. Guinness stout seems to give everything a real depth of flavour. And this Guinness Irish Apple Beer Bread not only has yummy Guinness goodness in it, but it also has delicious apple butter added into the mix! I used some of my homemade Drunken Granny Apple Butter, but if you don’t have time to whip up a batch of your own, any store-bought apple butter will do in a pinch. Being a quick bread, there are no rise times involved, so you’ll have two loaves out of the oven and ready for snacking before you know it. The bread is very moist and bursting with apple flavour. I like mine slathered in butter.
The folks at A Spicy Perspective, the blog where I came across the original recipe, suggested that it paired well with a sharp cheddar spread. Apples and cheddar do taste great together, so I adapted a spicy cheddar spread from the folks at Cabot Creamery that I already had in my repertoire. Since this is for St. Patrick’s Day, I decided to Irish it up a bit and used Kerrygold Reserve Cheddar Cheese and a bit more Guinness (of course). Folks loved the resulting Spicy Guinness Cheddar Spread, both on the bread and on crackers as well.
This bread would work well with whatever St. Patrick’s Day feast you are preparing, but would also be very welcome at your St. Patrick’s Day breakfast table. Or as a mid-day snack to sop up some of those pints, I mean as a bit of pick-me-up. Make a couple of loaves today and don’t forget the Spicy Guinness Cheddar Spread! (That’s one down and 16 more days to go!)
Guinness Irish Apple Beer Bread
recipe adapted from: A Spicy Perspective
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups Drunken Granny Apple Butter, or your favourite Apple Butter
- 12 oz. Guinness Stout beer
- 1 Tablespoon Lyle’s Golden Syrup (can substitute in 1 T Molasses)
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 Tablespoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 350° F. Butter and flour two 8 1/2 x 4″ loaf pans.
Cream butter and sugar together until fluffy. Add eggs, apple butter, Guinness and golden syrup. Mix well.
In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder and salt together. Slowly add dry mixture to the wet mixture. Mix until just combined.
Pour the batter evenly into the prepared loaf pans. Baked for 60 – 70 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the loaf comes out clean.
Cool bread in the loaf pans for 10 minutes before gently inverting on to a wire rack to cool completely.
Spicy Guinness Cheddar Spread
recipe adapted from: Cabot Cheese
- 8 ounces Kerrygold Reserve Cheddar, grated (about 2 cups) *
- 1/4 cup Sour Cream
- 2 tablespoons salted butter, cut into small pieces
- 1 tablespoon Guinness Stout
- Large pinch freshly ground nutmeg
- Pinch ground red pepper (cayenne)
Place grated cheddar, sour cream, butter, Guinness, nutmeg and cayenne pepper in bowl of food processor and pulse until smooth.
* You can substitute in another cheddar if you are not able to find Kerrygold. I will mention though that you should buy a block of cheddar and grate it yourself. Do not use bags of shredded cheese. The pre-shredded cheese is coated with cellulose or corn starch to keep it from sticking together and could cause your cheese spread to be less creamy than it could be if you grated the cheese at home.