Sunday, March 18, 2012

Irish Foods

If you ask nearly anyone for a Irish food, they'll probably scratch their heads and then reply "Corned Beef and Cabbage."  The alternative answer is "potatoes."

If you've ever cooked corned beef -- I mean really cooked it, not reheated it from a vacuum packed bag -- you know it's nothing but work!  You need to brine the fresh beef brisket for a week to 10 days.  Then, if you want it to be amazingly delicious, you slow roast it for several hours before you slice it for a mile high sandwich.

That is why I don't cook it.  Well that and the fact that I don't really care for corned been all that much.

So instead of sharing a recipe for corned beef and cabbage, I'll share another Irish food: Soda Bread.

Delicous, like all breads, warm from the oven with a thin layer of butter.


Authentic Irish Soda Bread
Easy 4 ingredient recipe

Note: Traditional Irish Soda Bread does not have raisins or sugar; it was basic bread that the peasants ate with every meal. The bread with the raisins and sugar is dessert bread reserved for special occasions and it is called "Spotted Dog" or "Railway Cake."

   4 cups of unbleached all purpose flour 
   1 teaspoon of baking soda
   1 teaspoon of salt
   14 ounces of Buttermilk

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Grease a Dutch oven and preheat it in the 425 degree oven for about 15 minutes, while you prepare the dough.

In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda and salt. Make a well in the center and slowly pour in the buttermilk, incorporating it into the dry ingredients with a wooden spoon a little at a time.

Once you have it all mixed together into sticky dough, turn it out onto a floured cutting board and knead lightly (too much kneading will make the gas escape).

Form the dough into a ball and flatten slightly into a disc shape. Dip a sharp knife in flour and cut an X mark across the top of the dough.

Place the dough into the preheated Dutch oven, cover with the lid and bake for 30 minutes.

Remove the lid and bake another 15 minutes.

Remove from the oven and enjoy.

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