Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Irish Brown Soda Bread

Irish Brown Soda Bread

This is a very easy-peasy recipe. From measuring the ingredients to putting the bread in the oven took about 15 minutes. This bread baked up beautifully and tastes absolutely wonderful: crunchy on the exterior and soft and dense in the interior. Good with a smear of butter. This bread is the easiest and quickest bread I ever made. Normally, Irish Soda Bread tastes the best the day it is baked, but toastes up nicely in the toaster the next day spread with a a smear of reduced-fat cream cheese, any type of nut butter, or just plalin butter. This recipe is adapted from Cooking Light magazine, March 2007 issue.

2 cups all-purpose flour (9 ounces)
2 cups whole-wheat flour (9.5 ounces)
1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda (0.3 ounce)
3/4 teaspoons salt (0.2 ounce)
2 cups buttermilk (1:0.9 pounds)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Position oven rack to the center of the oven.

In a very large bowl, combine the all-purpose flour, whole-wheat flour, baking soda and salt. Stir ingredients with a whisk until thoroughly blended. Make a well in center of mixture. Add the buttermilk to the flour mixture. Using a pastry fork, stir everything together until blended. Dough will be sticky. Using floured hands, transfer dough to a generously floured surface and knead lightly 4 to 5 times. Using floured hands, gently shape dough into an 8-inch round loaf (I gently turn and shape dough into a round shape and then pat the top into 8-inch diameter; add more flour on work surface as needed and flour hands as needed). Place dough on a baking sheet coated with nonstick cooking spray. Cut a 1/4-inch deep X on the top of the dough, using a serrated knife..

First bake at 450 degrees for 15 minutes. Immediately reduce oven temperature to 400 degrees (do not remove bread from oven) and bake for additional 15 minutes or until loaf sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom. Transfer loaf to a wire rack to cool.

Yields 6 to 8 servings

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