What can I say about life in Amsterdam? Is it as magical as I had hoped and dreamed it would be? Well…fortunately for me, most of the time the answer is a resounding “hellzyeah!”. The beautiful canals, the colorful sunsets, and the miles (or kilometers) of well-maintained bike trails can make daily life feel so effortless, like a gift that you are fortunate to receive.
Then the snow comes. After sitting by the window and admiring the beautiful white powder that has grazed the entire landscape, you snap out of the daydream and realize that you still need to get to work and you’re completely out of food. Can you still cycle? Maybe if you put on all your water-resistant gear, chain your tires, and ride really slow…
Probably not. You are clumsy. Insanely clumsy.
As for your commute, luckily the trams are running smoothly, but the trip to the grocery store will have to wait for less Siberian-like days. Time to use up everything edible in the cupboards, and since bread is the starchy staple of choice for soups, jams, and cheeses everywhere…this is what you will make:
(Makes two loaves)
6 cups all purpose flour (patent bloom for the dutchies)
2 flavorful beers
2 Tbsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
½ cup of earth balance (optional…or use butter for the non vegan version)
2 Tbsp caraway seeds
Mix the flour, salt, and baking powder into a bowl. If you have a sifter, give it a nice sifting to lighten the flour. If you do not…it is also fine to press the flour through a fine mesh or steel pasta strainer.
Next add the delicious beers to the mix. Use a spatula to mix the flour and beer. The best beers to use are full flavor as these will give a slightly sour taste. I used one Brand Pilsner and one Dutch microbrew that had been in the fridge for a few months after a party.
Add the dough to either two loaf pans or one large casserole. Next add the melted earth balance to the top of the loaf, and sprinkle generously with caraway seeds.
Bake for 1 hour at 375F, or 190C.