Irish Soda Bread (& Herb Rubbed Brisket)

One of the things I love most about 52 Sunday Suppers is the collaboration. Not only is my friend, Kristin, helping me stick with the idea behind 52 Sunday Suppers in inviting more folks to the table, but our brainstorming sessions are stretching me outside my comfort zone in menu planning.

This week, Kristin and I decided to try something festive and fun to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. To aid in authenticity, we enlisted the help of our new friend, Rachel Gaffney. Rachel’s the real deal, y’all. She grew up in Ireland so she’s  the perfect person if you’re interested in creating an authentic Irish feast.

It all starts with Irish Soda Bread: a simple, dense (and really healthy) brown bread. Rachel’s recipe is an adaptation of her mother’s recipe.

Mum’s Irish Soda Bread

3 1/3 cups whole wheat flour * 1/2 cup all purpose flour * 2 Tablespoons wheat germ * 3 teaspoons rolled oats * 2 cups buttermilk * 1 egg * 2 Tablespoons canola oil * 1 teaspoon baking soda * 1 teaspoon salt * 1 teaspoon sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large mixing bowl mix all dry ingredients. Make a well in the center then add all liquid ingredients. Mix together. It should not be too dry. (I added a little more buttermilk.) Form a ball on a parchment lined baking sheet. Make a cross in the center with a sharp knife, sprinkle with oats for a rustic look and bake for approx 45 minutes. When you tap the bread, it should sound hollow. Cool on a wire tray.

This bread is not only easy to make, it’s hearty. It would stand strong next to any stew or soup you’d like to pair with but may I suggest trying it with Rachel’s Herb Rubbed Beef Brisket with Roasted Beets & Onions? Gracious.

Since I made and doubled the bread, sweet Kristin made and doubled the brisket recipe ~ then we sampled it together. We just about died. It’s so delicious.

Per Rachel’s suggestion, this is how it stacks up … a thin slice of brown bread, spread with fresh horseradish sauce, top with roasted beets & onions and then stack on the brisket. The combination of the flavors is outstanding. And kind of indescribable. I’ve tasted a lot of brisket living in Texas ~ and I must say, this traditional Irish recipe ranks right up there in my top three.

Make the jump to Kristin’s blog for the incredible brisket recipe and by all means, check out our 52 Sunday Suppers Facebook page and say hi!

Week Nine Menu

Rachel Gaffney’s Irish Soda Bread

Rachel Gaffney’s Herb Rubbed Beef Brisket with Roasted Beets & Onions

and happy st. patrick’s day!