Granny’s Soda Bread (Repost)

March 17, 2013

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!

In honour of the day, I thought I’d repost my favourite Irish recipe, which I originally posted for St. Patrick’s Day back in 2009: my Granny’s Irish Soda Bread.

As a yeast-less bread, this comes together in less than an hour start to finish. Short of a pint of Guinness (with a bit of Ribena is my fave), this bread slathered with butter is the perfect way to celebrate your Irish roots!

Granny’s Soda Bread

From my Granny (Eileen Way)
Yield: 1 loaf


2 cups white flour
2 cups whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 cups buttermilk (I use the 1% buttermilk)


Preheat oven to 375F.

Mix all of the dry ingredients together. Make a well in the centre, add the buttermilk and stir lightly until everything is combined.

Make into a flat loaf and cut an “X” in the top. Place on a baking sheet and bake for 35 to 40 minutes. (Note: If you are using an electric oven, place a pan of water on the lower rack to provide moist heat during cooking).


Cheesy Maple Cornbread

October 31, 2009

I have made this cornbread twice in the last weekend. It is super tasty. I first made it to go with the black bean and pumpkin soup as part of Operation Get Warm. And then a couple of days later to go with some veggie chili since I still had some buttermilk in the fridge. Apparently, it is the perfect accompaniment to warm liquids.


Cheesy Maple Cornbread

Adapted from Everybody Likes Sandwiches

1 cup flour
1 cup cornmeal
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cheddar cheese, grated (plus 1/4 cup for topping)
1 1/4 cup buttermilk
3/4 cup frozen corn
1/4 cup maple syrup
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup canola oil

Preheat oven to 400F.

In a large bowl, mix together the flour, cornmeal, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cheese.

In another bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, corn, syrup, eggs and oil. Pour into the dry mixture and stir until combined.

Pour batter into a greased 9×12 pan and top with remaining cheese. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until tester comes out clean.

Tomato Focaccia

September 6, 2009

My absolute favourite thing to buy at the Farmers Market is heirloom tomatoes. There are so many different varieties: green zebra, brandywine, pineapple, tigerella… Last weekend they were finally at the market in abundance and I stocked up! (I had a lot of caprese salad this week). My haul included a bag of multi-coloured cherry tomatoes which I decided would be perfect for tomato focaccia. This bread was delicious and very nice to look at. A definite showpiece to serve to guests. We had it the first night for dinner and then had the remainder two nights later cut into wedges and served with balsamic vinegar and olive oil for dipping. It was a hit!


Tomato Focaccia

Adapted from Eat Make Read
Yield: 1 loaf

1 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 cup warm water

3 1/2 cup flour
4 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon chopped rosemary
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup warm water

1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1 to 2 teaspoons sea salt
1 teaspoon chopped rosemary
1 tablespoon olive oil (for drizzling)

2 tablespoons olive oil (for greasing bowl)
2 tablespoons olive oil (for greasing pan)

In a small bowl, proof the yeast by combining it with 1 teaspoon sugar and 1/4 cup warm water Let mixture sit until foamy, about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, whisk together flour, the 4 teaspoons of sugar, salt and rosemary in a large bowl. Form a well in the center and pour in the yeast mixture, 1 tablespoon oil, and 1 cup warm water. Mix into a stiff mass.

Transfer dough to a floured work surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Form dough into a ball and transfer to a bowl greased with oil; cover with plastic wrap and let rise until dough has about doubled in size, about 1 1/2 hours.

Heat oven to 475F. Rub the bottom and sides of a round cake pan with oil. Transfer dough to the pan, flip to cover both sides in oil and flatten into the bottom of the pan with your fingertips. Cover the pan with a damp kitchen towel and set aside to let rise for 1 hour.

Gently press the tomatoes into dough and sprinkle with salt. Drizzle dough with olive oil. Bake until golden brown and cooked through, 30–35 minutes. Transfer to a rack to let cool slightly.

Pizza Dough

May 1, 2009

Last exam period, C and I went through several boxes of Costco frozen pizzas. This time I was determined that I would eat healthier while studying like mad. So one Friday, I whipped up a batch of pizza dough and made a pepperoni pizza. It was delish. So good, that a few days later I made up another batch – this time a double – and C and I made 2 pepperoni and 2 Hawaiian pizzas for our own “frozen pizzas”. The dough is really easy, but does take some time in the rising department.


Pizza Dough

Adapted from Smitten Kitchen
Yield: 1 large (serves 4) or 2 small (serves 2) pizzas

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoon active dry yeast
1 cup lukewarm water (may need up to 1 or 2 tablespoons more)
2  tablespoon olive oil

Stir together dry ingredients, including yeast, in a large bowl. Add water and olive oil, and stir mixture into a ball.

Dump the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead into a ball. Knead for one to two minutes. (If it is not coming together, cover the dough with the bowl and let it rest for a few minutes, then try again).

Lightly oil the inside of the bowl. Place the dough in the bowl and turn it over so that all sides are coated in oil. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and leave it to rise for one to two hours until it has doubled in size.

Once the first rise is finished, dump the dough back onto the floured surface and gently press the air out of the dough with the palm of your hands. Then fold it back into a ball shape and let it sit under plastic wrap for another 20 minutes.

Then roll out the dough into a circle or rectangle (approximately 1 cm thick). Place on a baking sheet sprinkled with cornmeal. Top with your preferred topping mix such as pepperoni or Hawaiian.

Bake on the lower rack of the oven at 450F for about 15 to 20 minutes, until the crust is browned and lightly blistered.

Granny’s Soda Bread

March 18, 2009

In honour of St. Patrick’s Day, I decided to whip up a loaf of my granny’s Irish soda bread. This is the first true “family recipe” that I have shared here and one of my most used recipes.

I could probably eat this bread everyday. In fact back in November, I did. For two weeks straight. I cooked a loaf on Sunday and took for lunch everyday with a slice of cheese. It was perfect for clandestine eating in my library carrel.

Which brings me to my top 4 ways for eating this soda bread:
(1) Fresh out of the oven, just plain.
(2) Slathered in butter.
(3) With a slice of Dubliner cheese.
(4) Topped with a teaspoon of blackberry jam.



Granny’s Soda Bread

From my Granny (Eileen Way)
Yield: 1 loaf

2 cups white flour
2 cups whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 cups buttermilk (I use the 1% buttermilk)

Preheat oven to 375F.

Mix all of the dry ingredients together. Make a well in the centre, add the buttermilk and stir lightly until everything is combined.

Make into a flat loaf and cut an “X” in the top. Place on a baking sheet and bake for 35 to 40 minutes. (Note: If you are using an electric oven, place a pan of water on the lower rack to provide moist heat during cooking).

Quick Beer Bread

January 27, 2009

Yesterday morning, I was feeling a little restless and wondering what I would have for lunch. I didn’t really feel like any of the soups I had kicking around. I looked in the fridge about a dozen times, hoping that something tasty would appear. A half empty beer that C had opened the night before caught my eye. The beer hadn’t been particularly good and I would probably end up throwing it out in a week or two, so I decided to try it as a beer bread.

The recipe came together really quickly as it is a no-yeast, no-knead bread (which was good since I started it about an hour and 15 minutes before I had to go to class). The crust on the bread was surprisingly crispy which I really liked, however the weird taste of the beer that had caused it to remain un-imbibed in the fridge also gave the bread a somewhat weird taste. So while I would make this recipe again, I would use a beer that I actually enjoyed drinking as well.


Quick Beer Bread

Adapted from A Year in Bread
Yield: 1 loaf

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 1/2 cups beer (I used Howe Sound Brewing’s Father John Winter Ale)

Preheat oven to 375F. Mix together flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder in a large bowl. Spoon the batter into a greased loaf pan. Bake for 45 minutes.

Cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and cool 10 more minutes on a rack. Serve warm or at room temperature. (This bread can be frozen).

Black Bean Soup with Rosemary Olive Oil Bread

January 11, 2009

Today was a cold rainy slushy day – perfect for hot bread and soup! I have wanted to make this bread recipe for awhile since we are big fans of the rosemary olive oil bread that a local bakery, Terra Breads, makes. This recipe makes more of a sandwich-type bread. It didn’t have the crunchy crust of the Terra version and was a bit too spongy for our liking (although that may have been my fault as I haven’t completely mastered the mixing on my new stand mixer).

The soup, however, was delicious. I was looking for a quick and easy soup recipe and decided to check out one of my favourite local food blogs, Everybody Likes Sandwiches. She has a bunch of soup recipes (of which I will try more of since this one was so successful) and I randomly picked this one. Yum!

Black Bean Soup with Ham

From Everybody Like Sandwiches (with my notes in italics)

2 cans black beans, drained
1 tsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
6 cloves garlic, diced
1 red pepper, diced
1/4 tsp chipotle powder (I used Mexican Chili Powder as it was what I had on hand)
4 slices of thinly sliced ham (I used black forest from the deli counter)
1 large tub (500 ml) of your favorite fresh salsa
4-5 cup chicken stock (I used vegetable stock since I don’t eat chicken)
1/2 cup frozen corn
hot sauce
juice of 1 lime
1 avocado, sliced
sour cream (optional)

Heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil in a large pot. Add in onion and garlic and sautee for a few minutes until translucent. Add in red pepper, ham and chipotle powder and stir until combined. Add beans, salsa and cover with chicken stock. Cover pot and cook over medium-low heat for 10-15 minutes.

Turn down the heat to a low simmer. Use a potato masher and mash up the beans until the soup thickens. Add in corn, hot sauce and the lime juice and give everything a good stir. Simmer for a few additional minutes until everything is heated through. Serve in bowls with slices of avocado and a dollop of sour cream (I omitted this part).

Rosemary Olive Oil Bread

From Inside a Black Apple

Combine and set aside:
2 C King Arthur White Whole Wheat flour (or similar…this particular pale whole wheat is really tasty, has just a tiny bit of nuttyness and is a little more nutritious than its white counterpart)
1 Tablespoon Sugar
1 Tablespoon + 1 pinch Salt
2 packages of dry yeast (1/4 oz packets)
2 Tablespoons fresh Rosemary (or dried, if it’s what you have access to)

Warm lightly on the stove
1 C Water
1 C Milk
1/4 C Olive Oil

Have on hand:
1 Egg
2 C. White Whole Wheat flour
Greased loaf pan (6″x9″ or 5″x8″)
1-2 Tablespoons butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Remove liquids from heat, and add egg. Stir this mixture into the dry ingredients. Blend slowly (with your mixer, or your wooden spoon) and then a bit more vigorously for 3 minutes. Stir in the other 2 cups of flour with your good ol’ trusty spoon. Cover with a cloth and let rise about 50 minutes (it should be about doubled). Stir down and then spoon into greased loaf pan.

Bake for about 35 minutes, and then test with a knife or skewer for done-ness. It may take another 5-10 minutes if you’re using a 5″x8″ loaf pan. Take care to not overcook, it should be lovely and golden all around. Brush/spread top with a dollop or two of softened butter.

Let it cool for at least 30 minutes (but preferably a bit more) before turning it out. Let cool a bit more, whilst cutting slivers absent-mindedly for yourself to snack on. After it’s mostly cooled, unless you have enough people to devour the whole loaf right away, cut off some slices for yourself and those deserving, and wrap it in foil (It’s very moist and soft and wonderful, but seems to get a hardness/staleness creeping in very quickly).