Continuing the baking theme in these pages, it's good to hear more people are trying out baking and cooking with beer. Campbell's Bakery in Crieff have been baking a beautiful loaf with Lia Fail and Ian, one of our regulars in the Brewery Tap on a Friday afternoon (come on down for a taste and a look around), brought in a heavenly loaf of bread baked with Blackfriar and chilli flakes - would be so good dipped into some extra virgin olive oil and balsamic. The previous Friday he brought in some divinely rich brownies made with Lia Fail. So baking with beer was certainly still in my mind. On Friday evening I was going to bake an ordinary gingerbread, but since there was already a half-opened botle of Blackfriar on the kitchen table, the loaf took on a new dimension. Especially when I pulled out of the cupboard the jar of ground ginger to discover it wasn't ginger at all but cardamom. Hmm... Since the butter was already melted and cooling in the frying pan and the sugar and treacle had been mixed together, I thought, 'Fair enough, carry on and add the cardamom in place of the ginger and throw in the last of my ground cinnamon - and while I'm at it, use the Blackfriar I'm drinking in place of the milk...'
You can see above a stylist's photo (all right, I took the picture, and you can also see I'm no stylist!) of the loaf complete with a well-thumbed through and stained Lofty Peak Recipe Book. The loaf did taste slightly gingery - cardamom, cinnamon and treacle, together with the not-so secret ingredient of Blackfriar combined to give a rich, spicy warmth. Tasty and moreish. Lovely words, even for a brewer!
I'm not the only one to think that Blackfriar tastes good, as we received a postcard from our good friend Johny in Liberec, Czech Republic with his view on this mighty ale - I hope you can read them -