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By February 23, 2017 0 Comments Read More →

Guinness Bread with an Oat Topping

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This is a completely different texture and taste to the crusty white rolls – it’s far chewier, for one thing, and the treacle gives it a rich aftertaste. Like our Tiger Bread, it’s a bread of character! It’s delicious strong cheeses or a good ham.



  • 350g rye flour
  • 150g strong white bread flour
  • 10g salt
  • 10g fast-action dried yeast
  • 90ml black treacle
  • 140ml warm water
  • 250ml Guinness or any full-flavoured beer such as ‘Hobgoblin’ (a beer of mischievous character, according to the label)


  • 150ml Guinness or similar full-flavoured beer
  • 100g rye flour
  • A pinch of caster sugar
  • 60g porridge oats

1           Mix the flours and the salt and yeast in a bowl.

2           Put the treacle, water and ale in a jug and stir, then add about two-thirds to the dry mixture. Add the remainder of the liquid slowly, as you may not need it all, but try and incorporate as much as possible.

3           Put some oil onto your work surface and begin to knead. The more you knead the smoother and less sticky it gets, but after 10 minutes it should be a smooth piece of dough.

4           Put the dough in a large bowl, then cover and leave it to rise – it will take longer than dough made with white bread flour.

5           When you are ready to shape the dough, make the topping by mixing the ingredients (excluding the rye flour) to form a rough paste.

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6           Take out the dough, flatten it gently, then roll it into a thick oblong. Fold it in at the sides, then press it down and shape it into a tight ball. Tuck the dough in underneath it as your fingers go round it – you are looking to create a ball with a smooth, tight top and a rough underside.

7           Spoon the paste on and smooth it down with your hand to form an even layer. After you’ve applied the topping – but before it sits and rests again – dust with the rye flour.

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8           Place the loaf carefully on a baker’s stone or a baking tray and leave it to prove for a further 1 hour (or more) until it’s increased in size again. The ‘topping’ will split, which is part of the character of this bread.

9           Bake in a preheated oven at 220°C for 35–45 minutes until the base of the loaf sounds hollow when tapped.

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Posted in: Making Bread

About the Author:

Ruth Tott is the publisher of Home Farmer Magazine, and together with her husband, Paul Melnyczuk, Editor,is founder of the company. But her background is far removed having specialised in Costume History with a Post-Grad diploma in Museum Studies to boot. A far cry from looking after chickens, growing veg and making bread!

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