Another gem from the Irish Pub Cookbook (don’t worry—I’ll run out of new ones soon).
A word about the Irish and their bread. I’ve traveled in Ireland a number of times and visited different areas; I’ve attended Irish events in the greater Boston area, most often hosted by native-born Irish. With very few exceptions, any event ends with an cupán tae and some bread. The basic bread is arán donn, or brown bread, which appears at every meal in Ireland and a few times in between. If it’s a fancier event you get arán sióde (soda bread), which has currants or raisins in it and is sweeter. This recipe is kind of a blend between the two: it has raisins and currants, but it’s dark and not too sweet—and it goes well with tea!
In Ireland it’s rude to turn down the offer of tea and bread, so sit back and enjoy it. And don’t forget the butter!
Irish Treacle Bread
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground ginger
10 Tblsp butter
6 Tblsp molasses
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 cup brown sugar, packed
2/3 cup currants
2/3 cup golden raisins
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and line a 9-inch loaf pan.
Sift the flour, baking soda, and spices into a bowl. Lightly rub in the butter until the mixture forms fine crumbs.
|Dry ingredients with butter rubbed in|
Whisk the molasses with the eggs and the buttermilk, then stir in the sugar. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture then pour in the molasses mixture. Mix with a fork, gradually drawing in the flour from around the edges.
Add the currants and the golden raisins and mix to a soft dough. Spoon the dough into the loaf pan, leveling the surface with a wet spatula.
Bake in the preheated oven for 50-55 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Let cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and let cool for about two hours.
Serve with plenty of butter!
What does Nell Pratt find in the privy (don't you want to know? It's not what you think!), and what does that have to do with the hit-and-run death of a man outside the building?