During my 3rd trip to Ireland, and after eating all that wonderful “brown bread” I went hunting for a cookbook with a traditional recipe, since waiting for a 4th trip to eat that bread was not practical. Kylemore Abbey had such a book and it came home with me. I made the recipe, following it exactly. Wanting a slightly sweeter and less stiff dough, I made a few changes and came up with this recipe. It’s just as good without the oat flour, but since I only had 3 cups of whole wheat flour left, grinding oatmeal in a spice grinder gave me what is referred to in this recipe as oat flour. I’ve used as much as 1/4 cup of molasses and that worked too.
|3C whole wheat flour |
2C unbleached white flour
1C oat flour
1C wheat bran
1/2C steel cut oats
3T wheat germ
2t baking soda
2T dark molasses
1 extra large egg
After gathering together all the dry ingredients, measure them out and place into a large bowl. Mix the dry ingredients together and then gather the wet ingredients.
Place part of the buttermilk into a measuring cup or bowl, then add the molasses and egg. Mix thoroughly with a whisk, set aside and make a well in the center of the dry ingredients so you can mix wet and dry together.
Pour the buttermilk mixture into the well and add any of the leftover buttermilk from the quart. The batter can be sticky enough to warrant using more flour, so reserving some of that buttermilk until needed might save some time. Mix the ingredients together until all the dry ingredients have been blended into a moist dough. Separate the dough in half.
Place on half of the dough on a floured board for kneading and knead long enough to form a smooth loaf. Knead the 2nd half into another loaf and place both on a greased baking sheet. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
In this instance I greased the baking sheet and the loaves with olive oil. Bake at 400 degrees for 45 minutes, then remove from the oven and let cool on a drying rack. I use cake racks, since I have them and they do the job of allowing the bottoms to cool and not steam on the hot pan. When cooled, slice the bread loaf, spread with butter and jam or marmalade and eat. This photo shows my plum, pineapple and orange marmalade, which obscures the bread, but tastes very good.