Because of the focus of St. Patrick, and all things Irish, I am making Irish Soda Bread.
There are a ton of recipes for soda bread...so I am experimenting.
This bread is a peasant bread..with very few ingredients.
Yesterday I tried this recipe Irish Soda Bread with Raisins from
Bon Appétit February 2005 magazine.
It was tasty...very simple...almost "too" simple and lacked flavor. I would have liked this much more if it was in a muffin form or drop scone form and with added flavor. Although, butter and honey dripping off made this bread delightful!!!
While reading the history of St. Patrick, I was intrigued to learn, St. Patrick was kidnapped from England, as a young boy, and taken on a ship, by pirates, to Ireland. He was sold as a slave and worked for many years. His birth name was Maywin Socket but his owners called him "pigboy". Maywin was sad and lonely, and missed his home, but found comfort in talking to God in prayer. Six years later, he escaped from Ireland and returned to England. He dedicated his life to the service of God and over time, became a Bishop in the Catholic Church, where he received the name "Patrick". During his life, he felt compelled to forgive the men who kidnapped him, sold him and those who used him in slavery to indulge in their own selfish pleasure and indulgences. He decided to return to Ireland to help those same people to teach them about God. He forgave and then began to help the people learn about God and change their lives. He would use the three leaf clover to explain God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit...three in one. (Amazing how this day, showing respect and homage to this man's testimony of life, forgiveness and servitude to others, has spun back to the serving of self and indulgence.)
I went onto Queen Martha's site and she has a tutorial, first, the history of Irish Soda Bread and then her own recipe here: Martha's Irish Soda Bread
Google found this recipe for me and it looks like a winner. It is Classic Buttermilk Irish Soda Bread from the Los Angeles Times on-line. It was so different...and the texture was moist.
The batter/dough was very wet...and I made a note to add a little more flour to the dough next time I make it.
So, our dinner was a tribute to Irish cuisine but "reworked":
Instead of corned beef...bacon was our replacement with cabbage. This recipe was amazing!
Baked Cabbage with Bacon from Bon Appétit, May 1996 magazine,
Roasted Chicken, Parsley Potatoes and Irish Soda Bread.
"May your blessings outnumber
the shamrocks that grow,
and may trouble avoid you
wherever you go."
~ Irish Blessing