RECIPE: Irish Brown Soda Bread

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Found in nearly every restaurant, pub and supermarket in Ireland, this bread is lesser known than plain soda bread, but perhaps more delicious. Craggy, rustic, dense and flavorful.   Read the story for more on New York City chef Patti Jackson’s 8-month sabbatical on the Emerald Isle.

Irish Brown Soda Bread

Adapted by chef Patti Jackson from a Dublin gastropub called the Chophouse

1 ¾ cups plus 2 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
2 cups stoneground whole wheat flour
2 cups rolled oats (larger flakes, if available)
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon baking soda
2 tablespoons boiling water
1 ¾ cups buttermilk

Preheat oven to 375°. Mix flours, oats and salt in a large bowl.  In another bowl, mix together honey, dark brown sugar, baking soda and boiling water; stir to melt all.  Add baking soda mixture and buttermilk to flours and mix well to form a sticky dough (you may need to use your hands); do not over-work.  Allow to rest 10 minutes, then, using lightly floured hands, form into an 8-inch by 5-inch oblong loaf on a parchment-lined cookie sheet.  Cut a long slash in the top. Bake for 40 minutes.  Remove from oven and cover with a damp towel to prevent too heavy a crust from forming.

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