Brown Soda Bread
Submitted by Jonathan
Normally, Irish soda breads tend to be a bit dry, but this recipe uses wheat germ and bran to make an extremely moist, rich, almost buttery-tasting bread, densely textured and flavourful, with more than a little fiber. It's a perfect foil for thinly sliced smoked salmon, but there's nothing wimpy here. This hearty, dark bread is just right for manly bakers.
Makes 2 loaves
- 2 cups all-purpose white flour, plus extra for kneading
- 2 cups stone-ground whole wheat flour
- 3/4 cup wheat germ
- 1/4 cup wheat bran
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 large eggs, beaten
- 2 cups buttermilk
- Preheat the oven to 375*F. Mix together the 2 cups white flour, whole wheat flour, wheat germ, wheat bran, baking powder, salt, and baking soda in a large bowl. Beat together the eggs and buttermilk in a small bowl.
- Make a well in the center of the flour mixture. Pour the egg and buttermilk mixture into the well all at once, and mix well with a wooden spoon till a soft dough forms.
- Sprinkle 1/4 cup flour onto a clean counter top and scrape all the dough out onto the floured surface. Coat your clean hands with flour and knead the dough for about 2 minutes, until it is smooth. With a dough scraper or knife, divide the dough in half, and form each half into a slightly flattened ball. Place the 2 rounds of dough on a floured baking sheet and slash a right-angle cross about 1/2 inch deep into the top of each with a lame, knife, or razor blade.
- Place the loaves on the middle rack of the oven and bake 35 to 40 minutes, until the loaves are deep brown.
- Remove from the oven and cool the loaves on a wire rack for at least half an hour. Don't cut the bread till it cools, otherwise the steam will escape and dry it out. The bread is great with a liberal coating of butter.