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The Sour Milk is the Key.
I made soda bread for years, but avoided making brown bread; I assumed it would turn out like a large whole-wheat biscuit, an item I have no fondness for.
However, brown bread was served in every pub in Doolin with pots of tea, and on the breakfast buffet at the B&B I stayed in. I realized that the bread was not baked fresh every day and still tasted good. I looked up a recipe as soon as I got home. My loaf also keeps a good taste for several days, heel to heel.
Combine in a mixing bowl:
Knead GENTLY into a ball.
The traditional way to shape a loaf is to make it into a round a cut a deep X on top (to make sure the dense bread cooks all the way through.
I cheat. In order to insure complete baking, I make three or four balls of dough and set them in a cake pan lined with parchment paper. Alteratively, I place the balls into a well-greased bundt pan.
Bake until brown, about 40 minutes.
Remove from oven. Let it sit a couple of minutes to stablize the shape: then remove to a cooling rack.
Maura Enright, Proprietor
Author: Maura Enright
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