Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Irish Anscestor Dinner

With St. Patrick's Day approaching, I created an authentic Irish meal and used the opportunity
to connect my girls with some Irish great great great grandparents. I found the Downs they lived in and googled them to find pictures of the cities they would have walked when they would have walked them.
While dining, we looked through books on Irish Culture from the library and listened to Nightnoise, with many of the songs in Gaelic. After dinner, my husband read some Irish stories to the kids.

We told stories of the two grandparents as we passed around pictures from their hometowns. I explained the Irish love of Stout or Guinness. At the table, we each had a mini bottle of soda to pour in our beer glass to see who could get the largest head.

For dinner we had an Irish Bacon and Cabbage Soup that the reviews said was really authentic. It was o.k., everyone ate it, but next year we go back to the plain Corned Beef and Cabbage Boiled Meal because everyone loves it.

The real hit was the Oatmeal Soda Bread. We each broke off many helpings and couldn't get enough. The crust was crunchy and the inside was soft and mildly sweet. This recipe is also much lower in fat than other similar recipes. So, you had better try it for your St. Patrick's Day feast with some Irish Butter... Ooooh that stuff is amazing. It really is.

Oatmeal Soda Bread
  • 3 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup quick cooking oats
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 (8 ounce) container low-fat sour cream
  • 3/4 cup skim milk
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  • In a large bowl, mix together flour, 1/2 cup oats, salt, baking powder, and baking soda.
  • In another bowl, mix together sour cream, milk, honey, and sugar. Add to the flour mixture, and mix just until well blended. Stir in melted butter or margarine.
  • Turn dough onto a lightly sprayed baking sheet. Shape into a round, lightly mounded circle, about 8 inches diameter. Brush the top of the loaf with melted butter or margarine, and sprinkle with remaining 1 tablespoon oats. With a knife, score the top of the loaf into quarters.
  • Bake for about 40 minutes, or until browned. Cool completely before slicing.
Secrets for a fantastic Bread and quick rise bread
1. Preheat the oven with a cooking stone on the middle rack and a broiler pan underneath.

2. Let any quick rise bread, muffin, biscuit, pancake sit at room temperature for 30 minutes to allow the soda and baking powder to dissolve and start to work, making a fluffier item. I let the bread sit on the baking peel while the oven preheated.

3. Pour 1 cup of water in the broiler pan when you place the bread on the stone or pan to cook. The steam assists the rising process, and keeps the inside moist.


1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the ideas! I just made the bread and it smells delicious! We'll have rootbear in our Guiness mugs we bought in Ireland.
    Keep sending me good ideas!