This is fantastic eaten fresh, and nearly as good the next day toasted with some more butter. Do not use stale beer for this recipe, you want the carbonation.
- 3 cups self-rising flour*
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1/3 cup unsulfured molasses
- A pinch of salt (roughly 1/8 teaspoon)
- 12 ounces of Guinness extra stout
- Butter for greasing the pan and painting the top, about 3 tablespoons
* If you don't have self-rising flour, you can substitute using a ratio of 1 cup all-purpose flour, 1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder, plus 1/8 teaspoon of salt, for every cup of self-rising flour. Have made both ways though and got better results from the self-rising flour.
1 Preheat oven and prepare loaf pan: Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 9x5-inch loaf pan well with butter.
2 Whisk together the flour, salt and sugar in a large bowl.
3 Slowly add Guinness to the flour, add molasses: Slowly pour the Guinness into the flour mixture. (The “pub cans” are larger than 12 ounces, but they have better carbonation, so I pour most of it out and leave a swig to drink. This has never failed me, but if you are a stickler, use a 12-ounce bottle of Guinness instead.)
Start stirring the beer into the dry ingredients, and when you are about halfway done, add the molasses. Mix well, just to combine.
Don’t work the heck out of the batter – because that’s what it’ll look like – but you don’t want lumps, either.
4 Bake: Pour into the loaf pan to no more than 2/3 full. Pop into the oven immediately and bake at 350°F for 50 minutes. Since ovens can vary, check the bread after 40 minutes and see if a tester inserted into the deepest part of the loaf comes out clean. If it does, you’re done.
5 Cool and paint with butter: Let the loaf cool a bit, maybe 5 minutes, and then turn it out onto a rack. Paint it with lots of soft butter, which will melt as you go.