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March 2001 Issue
Potatoes and Breads
by Victoria Smith
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Irish Soda Bread #4

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour or whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 tbsp. cold butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 2 tbsp. granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups raisins
  • 1 2/3 cups buttermilk
  • 1 tbsp. melted butter
In large mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Cut in cold butter with pastry blender or two knives until fine. Stir in raisins. In bowl beat eggs, stir in buttermilk and soda. Make well in dry ingredients and add liquids all at once, mixing lightly with fork until blended. Turn dough on to floured surface and knead lightly for 10 seconds. Shape dough into ball and place on buttered baking sheet. Flatten ball into 8 or 9-inch loaf.

Grease sharp knife with butter and cut 1/4-inch deep cross from edge to edge to mark into quarters.

Brush top with melted butter; bake in preheated 375F oven 40 to 45 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from baking sheet and cool to lukewarm.

  • Yields: 1 round loaf
  • Preparation Time: about 1 hour


Irish Whole Wheat Soda Bread #5

  • 3 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk, yogurt or milk with lemon juice
Combine the dry ingredients and mix thouroughly to distribute the soda and baking powder, then add enough buttermilk to make a soft dough but firm enough to hold its shape. Knead on a lightly floured board for 2 or 3 minutes, until quite smooth and velvety. Form into a round loaf and place in a well buttered 8 inch cake pan or on a well buttered cookie sheet. Cut a cross on the top of the loaf with a very sharp floured knife. Bake in a preheated 375F oven for 35-40 minutes, or until the loaf is nicely browned and sounds hollow when rapped with the knuckles. (The cross will have spread open which is characteristic of soda bread.)
  • Yields: 1 round loaf
  • Preparation Time: Less than an hour


Irish Soda Bread #6

  • 4 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 pint milk -- or buttermilk
  • Raisins or currants (optional)
Mix dry ingredients together. Add milk or buttermilk to form a loose dough. Add raisins or currants, if desired. Place dough on floured board and knead until smooth. Form into a round about 2 inches high and make a large X with a knife in top of dough. Bake on greased baking sheet at 375 degrees for 45 minutes.
  • Yields: 1 round loaf
  • Preparation Time: about 1 hour


Potato and Apple Pudding

  • 2 tbsp. Butter
  • 8 oz. self-raising flour
  • 6 oz. freshly mashed potatoes
  • 4 tbsp. milk
  • 5 medium cooking apples
  • Brown or white sugar
  • 2 whole cloves
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 3 tbsp. cider
Mix the butter into the hot mashed potatoes, add a good pinch of salt, and the flour, and mix well, then add enough milk to make a soft, slack dough. Roll out and line a 1-qt bowl with some of it, reserving enough for the lid.

Fill with the apples, peeled and cored and finely sliced, and sweeten to taste with sugar. Add 2 whole cloves, the lemon juice and the cider (or water), taking care not to make it too wet. Dampen the pastry edges, lay the lid on and press down. Cover with foil and secure well. Steam, or cook set in boiling water up to the rim, for 2 - 2 1/2 hours. Serve cut in wedges with cream or home-made custard.

  • Yields: 4 servings
  • Preparation Time: about 3 hours

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