When Craggie Brewing Company began planning its 1 year anniversary celebration, co-owner Jonathon Cort thought that beer bread would be a great companion to the Beer-B-Q party. He called his friends at the West End Bakery and they agreed. “It was so much fun partnering with those guys and the bread tasted so good!” said Cathy Cleary, co-owner of the bakery. “We really wanted to put it on our bread schedule, but there just wasn’t room.” That’s understandable given that the bakery makes up to eight different breads every day; at any given time you might find sunflower spelt, spinach feta, whole grain spelt, and tomato basil filling up the bread bins behind the counter. After some brainstorming, the idea of making pizza dough instead of bread dough came up. “It made sense,” said Cathy. “Several customers had been requesting pizza dough, and one of our employees, Greg, liked to make pizza crust using beer.”
The West End Bakery’s Craggie Pizza Dough is made with beer instead of water, Craggie’s Belgian-Style Ale, Dubbelicious. This “double” ale is made with barley, rye, wheat and oat malts brewed with Belgian candy sugar and then fermented with a regional yeast strain. The flour used in the dough is 100% North Carolina Organic; the bakery is one of only seven bakeries in the region participating in the NC Organic Bread Flour Project (http://ncobfp.blogspot.com) The resulting dough proved the partnership a success. “People love it,” Cathy reports.
Now the bakery is having a contest that features Craggie Pizza Dough that will run until the end of February. They’ll be awarding lots of $10 gift cards in all sorts of categories (Most Delicious, Best Use of Local Ingredients, Best Personality, to name a few) along with one overall winner. Entering is easy, and aspiring pizza artists get rewarded just for trying! Send a picture of the pizza along with your name and contact info, and a short description of the ingredients and inspiration to Krista@westendbakery.com. Folks who enter will get a confirmation reply and a voucher to enjoy one free cup of complimentary coffee. The bakery will post pictures of entries and winners on their facebook page. For more information stop by the bakery or call 252-WEST.