By Kelly Bogard
Every Labor Day weekend since 1975 the Central Texas town of West holds Westfest. A community of close to 3,000, the great people of West work every year, all year getting ready for this special 3-day event. There is a parade, a queen’s contest, clogging demonstrations, craft booths, music, food and much more – all to show pride and appreciation for the community’s Czech heritage.
My favorite part of Westfest is trying all of the Czech food. Churches, booster clubs and volunteer organizations set up booths with the best tasting homemade Czech food you can get your hands on. Potato pancakes and kolaches are crowd favorites, but my “must have” is a Beer Bread Sandwich of homemade bread flavored with dark beer, warmed, sliced and covered with sauerkraut, spicy mustard, swiss cheese and sausage.
For Beer Bread, you will need…
3 cups self-rising flour
2 Tbsp. granulated sugar
1 12-ounce bottle dark beer (room temperature)
This beer bread is very easy to make. Since you are using self-rising flour and the beer has yeast in it, there is no need to use standard baking yeast, which can be tricky in certain climates.
First things first – preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Use unsalted butter to grease the inside of one standard loaf pan. The easiest way to do this is to rub the stick directly on the pan so you can get into all of the sides and corners.
Mix flour and sugar together.
Slowly add the beer and stir until combined. It will be sticky. Note the flavor of the bread comes from the beer. The darker it is, the more intense the flavor will be. (This recipe is kid-friendly since the alcohol cooks away during baking.)
Pour into your buttered loaf pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until top is lightly browned.
Let the bread sit in the pan for 5 minutes, then remove to cool.
For Beer Bread Sandwiches, you will need…
homemade beer bread
You can use any kind of link sausage, but I think the peppery taste of Kiolbassa really brings out all of the favors in this sandwich without overpowering it. As an added bonus, Kiolbassa sausages is a Go Texan food.
To make a Beer Bread Sandwich, first slice your bread into ½ inch slices. After applying a layer of spicy mustard to the bread slices, layer sausage, sauerkraut and Swiss cheese. Doesn’t this look amazing?
So, if you are looking for something to do over the holiday weekend, go see the great people in West. I promise you will have a good time and will leave with a full belly.
From all of us at Texas Table Top, enjoy!
Recipe: Beer Bread
Summary: Warm, dense bread that’s perfect for all occasions
- 3 cups self-rising flour
- 2 Tbsp. granulated sugar
- 1 12-ounce bottle dark beer (room temperature)
- Unsalted butter
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- Grease the inside of one standard loaf pan with unsalted butter.
- Combine flour and sugar.
- Slowly add beer and mix well.
- Move dough to loaf pan.
- Bake for 45 minutes.
- Let stand in pan for 5 minutes and then remove to cool.
Prep time (duration): 5 minutes
Cooking time (duration): 45 minutes
Number of servings (yield): 1 loaf
- Cinnamon Raisin – Add 1 teaspoon cinnamon and ½ cup raisins. Substitute brown sugar for granulated sugar, and sprinkle a little cinnamon and sugar on top (to taste) before baking.
- Cheesy Jalapeno – Add ½ cup shredded cheese and 1 chopped jalapeno to mix. Sprinkle ¼ cup shredded cheese on top before baking.
Recipe: Beer Bread Sandwich
Summary: Warm, cheesy sandwich filled with robust flavors
- homemade beer bread
- Kiolbassa sausages
- Swiss cheese
- spicy mustard
- Slice Kiolbassa sausages length-wise and heat in a saucepan.
- Slice bread into approximately ½ inch slices.
- Spread mustard on two slices of bread.
- Layer cheese, sauerkraut and sausage on one slice of bread.
- Cover with second piece of bread.
- Cut in half and enjoy.
Prep time (duration): 5 minutes
Cooking time (duration): 5 minutes
Number of servings (yield): 1 sandwich