Easy to whip up, Onion Beer Bread is a crowd-pleaser
A larger-than-usual crowd meeting up at your house for dinner? This Onion Beer Bread would add a lot to the menu. It's delicious, of course, but it's also very easy to whip up. Unlike more conventional breads, this one doesn't involve yeast or require multiple risings. And except for the rosemary, you probably have all the ingredients in the house.
The dough is a basic mix of flour, sugar, salt and leavener combined with your choice of beer, topped with buttery onions, garlic and more butter. The result has a very moist and tender crumb.
Fair warning, though -- this dough is thick and sticky. It will look like nothing but a lumpy mess when you put it in the pan and spread it out. Twenty minutes later, after it's been baked, it will be transformed into enticing, golden, glistening bread.
The best gizmo for spreading the dough in the pan is a baker's tool known as an offset metal spatula, but a rubber spatula will also get the job done. Whichever you use, grease it by dipping it into the onion butter mixture so that it won't stick to the batter as you spread it. And, by the way, the surface of the bread doesn't need to be perfectly smooth. This is rustic bread.
Onion Beer Bread will make your whole house smell heavenly as it bakes. I recommend serving it right out of the oven, but it's still darn tasty at room temperature or even cold.
• Sara Moulton is host of public television's "Sara's Weeknight Meals." She was executive chef at Gourmet magazine for nearly 25 years and spent a decade hosting several Food Network shows including "Cooking Live." Her latest cookbook is "HomeCooking 101."