Mrs. Crowen’s American Lady’s Cookery Book, Mrs. T.J. Crowen [Dick & Fitzgerald: New York]
“Cabbage and Potatoes.- Chop cold boiled cabbage and potatoes quite fine; put them together, season with butter, pepper and salt, add a very little vinegar to hopt water, to moisten without making it wet, put it into a stew-pan over the firs, stir it well, that is may be thoroughly heated, but not burn; then take it into a dish, and serve for breakfast, or with cold boiled salt meat for dinner.”
So if you’re planning a trip to Ireland this summer be sure to sample some of the very many tasty delights this little country has to offer. Among the favourites has to be brown bread. Try it with fresh seafood chowder and it’s a match made in heaven. There’s something so special about the aroma of freshly baking brown bread that evokes happy memories of mixing the dough by hand with granny as she wipes her floured hands in her crossover apron before cutting the tradional cross in the top, which was said to ward off the devil and protect the household. To this day there is nothing quite like a slice, warm from the oven, slathered with pure kerrygold butter! Ah I’m salivating at the thought! Check out the recipe below and be sure to tell us what other Irish foods you’d like to see covered on the site.
Traditional Irish Brown Bread Ingredients: 4oz plain white flour/cream flour 12oz coarse wholemeal flour 1/2 to 3/4 pint of buttermilk (sourcream is a good substitute) 1 teaspoon bread soda 1/2 teaspoon salt
Method: Preheat oven to 200°c/400°f/gas 6
Sieve plain flour, salt and breadsoda in a bowl
Add wholemeal flour and stir
Mix in the buttermilk to form a soft dough
Turn onto a floured board and kneed until it comes together
Place on a floured baking sheet and shape into a round and cut a cross in top (don’t go too deep!)
Place in centre of the preheated oven for 40 mins
To check its fully cooked, knock on base of bread and it should sound hollow
Wrap in a clean dry (non fluffy) teatowel while hot and allow to cool to achieve a softer crust
Brown Soda Bread Straight from the oven No yeast, so no rising time. Simple and wholesome. Ingredients • 3 cups whole wheat flour • 1 cup all-purpose flour • 1 teaspoon baking soda • 1 teaspoon salt • 1 1/4 cups buttermilk • 1 large egg, beaten Honey (optional) Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 6, 200°C (400°F). Mix the flour, bread soda and salt together in a bowl. Combine the egg with the buttermilk and honey then mix into the flour. Add a little more buttermilk if the mixture is dry – it should be a soft dough. Then pour the lot into a lightly oiled loaf tin. Sprinkle the sesame seeds or porridge oats over the top of the loaf if using. Bake for 45-50 minutes. To know when it is cooked simply tap the bottom of the loaf – it will sound hollow when it is fully cooked. Remove from the tin and wrap in a clean tea towel while cooling. This will keep the crust soft.
How to make ‘Coddle’, sometimes known as Dublin Coddle. Traditionally made with left overs, this is real comfort food. The word Coddle can mean to slowly cook something or treat someone in an indulgent way or pamper. It’s made with bacon, sausages, potatoes, stock, maybe carrots (depending on who you talk to).
thick cut bacon
1 large onion, sliced
875g (1 3/4lb) potatoes, thickly sliced
large handful curly parsley, chopped
2 pints of stock
Brown the sausages and bacon in a frying pan for a few minutes. Place half the sausages and bacon in the bottom of a large, oven proof casserole
Add half the onions, potatoes, carrots, salt, pepper. Add another layer of meat and vegetables, season to taste
Cover with a lid and cook in a slow oven (180 degress, gas mark 3) for about 2 hours
Remove the lid for the last 30 minutes and dot the top layer with butter (this allows the top layer to colour and crisp up)