An appropriate beginning ...

finished loaf.jpg

Over the last couple of weeks I've been cooking quite a bit but everything I decided to make seemed inappropriate to post on this blog, especially as it would be the first post with a recipe ...
I've been making a loaf or two of "brown bread" every couple of days recently and today seemed like the day to actually take a few photos and share them and the recipe with you.
Being Irish our relationship with bread is a complicated one, on one hand we seem to adore the most processed bread you could possibly make  in our addiction with the white sliced pan but on the other hand we are very very fussy when it comes to homemade brown bread, everyone is an expert with an opinion, go figure!
As it happens my first food memory is of my mothers homemade brown bread! My Mam would spend hours and hours making a mountain of bread every couple of months (I'm not exagerating ... every worktop in the kitchen and the dinning room table would be full of freshly made brown soda bread) when the chest freezer would be restocked.
I still remember the smell as I walked into the house from school and the immediate rush to grab a slice with butter straight from the fridge that would quickly melt on the still warm bread ! We even had a neighbour (who now owns and runs a great restaurant in Dublin) who would miraculously appear at our front or back door everytime my mother just happened to be baking!!!
While this isn't the original recipe Mam used, it is my version of the her current recipe she still uses at home ... technically this hasn't come from one of my cookbooks, I think the basic version actually came from a "Flahavans" free booklet we got at some stage :)
... this is my version of an "oat soda bread" !!


Ingredients  (will make one two pound cake / loaf) 

  • 500 ml  of natural yogurt ( use a Greek yogurt - Fage Total)
  • 1  egg
  • 300g Oatlets (I use Flahavans, for those in Luxembourg it's available in Eirelux Howald)
  • 2 teaspoons bread soda
  • 2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds
  • 2  tablespoons poppy seeds
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower seeds
  • 2 tablespoons of mixed seeds (white and brown linseeds or the like ...)
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon salt (optional)

 (you could add a tablespoon of treacle but personally i prefer without)

What to do ...
1.     Place the yogurt, egg (and treacle if using) in a bowl or food mixer and mix well.
2.     Mix the oats, bread soda, seeds and salt in a separate bowl then add to the yogurt mixture and mix thoroughly.
3.     Grease a loaf tin with some butter (use a steel loaf tin if you can (gives the best results unless you have an old iron one!!!), doesn't bake well in a silicon one)
4.     Place mixture in greased loaf tin making sure to spread into each bottom corner
5.      Bake at 180°C  for 30 minutes.
6.     Lower the temperature to 150°C and bake for another 30 minutes.
7.    Cut, Eat and Enjoy

Hope you try this ... let me know how you get on :)