Make dinner tonight, inspired!

Wondering what to make for dinner tonight? This is your place for quick and healthy meal inspirations. Here you'll find recipes for seasonally focused dinners, desserts, breakfasts, and everything in between.

My cooking focuses on the freshest ingredients prepared in a simple and careful way, to highlight their uniqueness. My own diet is primarily vegetarian, but does include sustainable fish and seafood, and is gluten free.

Thank you for reading. I look forward to sharing some of my favorite recipes with you!

17 March 2010

Irish Soda Bread

Happy St. Patrick's Day! In tribute I thought I'd share a recipe today for Irish Soda Bread.

I'm not so sure this is even remotely Irish, aside from the fact that it's leavened by baking soda, like the traditional version. After all the additions I made I think it probably more closely resembles Pannetone. What I do know is that it's slightly sweet, perfumed by orange and vanilla, studded throughout with raisins, and is completely delicious.

As is typical with many celebration breads, this recipe makes one gigantic loaf. It's so yummy though I don't think you'll have much trouble finishing it off. It also freezes well and keeps for up to a week on your counter, wrapped tightly in plastic.

I'd welcome your ideas for what Pannetone meets Irish Soda Bread might be called. Maybe Pannesoda bread?

For the bread:
Yields 1, 12" round loaf

4 TB unsalted butter, melted
4 1/2 cups all purpose flour, plus more for kneading (I used 2 cup brown rice, 1 cup quinoa, 1 cup blanched almond meal)
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup golden raisins
1 TB fennel seeds
1/2 tsp 5 Spice Powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp xanthan gum
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise, seeds removed
1 1/2 cups milk
2 large eggs
zest of 1 orange

1) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment, set aside.

2) In a large bowl, combine flours, sugar, raisins, fennel seeds, baking soda, salt, xanthan and baking powder. Whisk to combine. In a separate bowl, whisk milk, eggs, 3 TB butter, orange zest, and vanilla seeds. Stir the wet mixture into the dry ingredients to form a dough. The dough will be wet and sticky.

3) On a well floured board, knead the dough until smooth, about 4 minutes. Add more flour as needed to prevent sticking. Form the dough into a 9" round and place it on the prepared baking sheet. Brush the loaf with remaining 1 TB butter and using a sharp knife, score a 'X' in the top of the loaf.

4) Bake until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean and the bread is golden brown, about 45-55 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.

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