Wednesday, February 24, 2010

making friends

In the months since Gourmet published its last issue, I have been making do by perusing old issues and flipping through my favorite Jamie Oliver cookbook. But, one can only go so long without fresh culinary inspiration. Yesterday, when the March issue of Bon Appétit landed in my mailbox (the publisher's substitution for my Gourmet subscription), I sighed heavily and threw it on the mail pile. Later, with cup of tea in hand and Olympics in the background, I absently picked it up and started flipping through. While the photography is not nearly as luscious, a lovely little article on Irish soda bread caught my attention. So simple, and somehow exactly what I have been craving. I think perhaps Bon Appétit and I are making friends.

Mrs. O'Callaghan's Soda Bread

nonstick vegetable oil spray
3 cups all purpose flour
3 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup (packed) brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) chilled margarine or butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes 2 cups buttermilk

Preheat oven to 425°F. Spray heavy baking sheet with nonstick spray. Whisk both flours, sugar, and baking soda in medium bowl to blend. Add margarine and cut in until margarine is reduced to pea-size pieces. Add buttermilk; stir until shaggy dough forms. Turn dough out onto lightly floured work surface. Knead until dough comes together, about 10 turns. Shape dough into 7-inch round. Place dough on prepared baking sheet. Cut large X, 1/2 inch deep, in top of dough. Bake bread until deep brown and bottom sounds hollow when firmly tapped, about 40 minutes. Transfer bread to rack and cool completely.

(recipe from Bon Appétit, March 2010)


ArchitectDesign™ said...

I hope you used butter.....luscious beautiful heavenly butter.
I've never been a fan of bon appetit but I may have to check it out. Have you ever seen Martha's 'everyday food' little magazine? It's hit or miss but I've tried some great things from it.

pve design said...

Years ago a client made Irish soda bread for me and I will never forget her kindness. I think I will make some for clients with a shamrock tag.

Janet said...

Stefan ~ I haven't made it is the project for the weekend. But, real butter for sure. And smears of raw honey. Delish.

pve ~ such a gorgeous gift! The sort that nourishes your body and soul.

Mrs. Blandings said...

This is the second time I've heard "Irish soda bread" in a matter of days. Seems the kitchen is beaconing.

The Down East Dilettante said...

I'm right behind Mrs. Blandings. The last thing this Dilettante needs is another recipe involving butter flour and sugar, but this is too good to pass up. What about currents? I always think of Irish soda bread with currents?

Somehow, I managed to post this comment in your yesterday's post. Darn those scrolling mice. Here it is again, where it belongs.

Evil influence, you.

An old BF used to make Irish Soda bread regularly in the winter...nothing nicer than a toasted slice, slathered with jam and butter, in front of the fire with a cup of tea...of course, that was 25 years and 40 pounds ago....

So, off to the kitchen. Soda bread for breakfast.


Janet said...

Brad ~ oh, currants, yes! And it is only really baaaaaaadddd if you put a LOT of butter on it. Try it toasted with honey.


I second what ArchitectDesign has said! MUST use butter. Preferably a glorious European variety (higher fat content, of course!) I've never really read Bon Appetit but I did find one of their cookbooks from the 90s at the thriftshop for a paltry sum today, and decided to purchase it just because the pictures were appetizing (or was I just hungry?). Can't wait to get cooking. Lauren