Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Try a little Toasted-ness

I may have mentioned something about Irish Soda Bread yesterday.

It's pretty good right out of the oven.  Tender and moist inside, with just the right hint of sweet and a nice whiff of whisky in every bit of fruit.  A fine, fine loaf, but not something I would commit to, exactly.

But...it's f%&@ing great when it's toasted, with butter and jam.

Honestly, if I'd known about the toast thing, I would probably have sung about it yesterday.


You got-ta, you got-ta, you got-ta...try a little...TOASTED-NESS! 
Ooh ooh ooh! Yeah!!* 

Irish Soda Bread with Extra Sugar and Drunken Raisins

by Sharon Graves
A melding of recipes from the NYTimes, Canal House Cooks Every Day, and A Cozy Kitchen.  Make it, then toast it!
Prep Time: 15 minutes, plus an hour to soak raisins
Cook Time: 35 - 40 minutes
  • 1/2 c. golden raisins
  • 1/4 c. Irish or Scotch whiskey
  • 4 c. flour
  • 1/3 c. brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • scant 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 4 Tbs. cold butter, cut into small dice
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 1/2 c. buttermilk

In a small bowl, combine raisins and whisky. Allow to soak for about an hour.

When the raisins are almost done soaking, preheat the oven to 400, and generously butter a large cast iron skillet.

Combine flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Add the butter pieces, and use a pastry blender, a fork, or two knives to cut in until butter pieces are broken up into even smaller pieces and are all coated in the flour mixture.

Combine eggs and buttermilk (you should have 2 cups of liquid total, so add a little more or less buttermilk if you need to), then add to the flour mixture. Drain the raisins, and add those, too. Using a wooden spoon, and your hands as needed. stir to combine. Dough will be quite sticky, so add a little more flour as you go.

Turn dough out onto a floured surface, and knead gently (it'll still be pretty soft), just enough to be able to form the dough into a round loaf. Transfer to the prepared skillet.  Using a serrated knife, cut a large X on the top of the bread, about 1/2 an inch deep.

Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until puffed and golden brown. Allow to cool in the skillet for a few minutes, then transfer to a rack. Serve warm with fresh butter, or make marvelous toast anytime.

* Another happy accident: until I started writing this post, I forgot how much I enjoyed this movie.

Jimmy Rabbitte: What do you call yourselves? 
Derek: "And And And." 
Jimmy Rabbitte: "And And fuckin' And?" 
Derek: Well, Ray's thinking of putting an exclamation mark after the second "and." Says it'd look deadly on the posters. 
Jimmy Rabbitte: Psshh... 
Outspan Foster: You don't like it? You think it should go at the end? 
Jimmy Rabbitte: I think it should go up his arse. 
Outspan Foster: Well, we're not married to it. 

Jimmy Rabbitte, Sr.: What did Evel Knievel want? 
Jimmy Rabbitte: God sent him. 
Jimmy Rabbitte, Sr.: What?
Jimmy Rabbitte: God sent him. 
Jimmy Rabbitte, Sr.: On a fucking Suzuki?

Jimmy Rabbitte: What do you play? 
Failed Drug Buyer: I used to play football in school. 
Jimmy Rabbitte: I mean, what instrument? 
Failed Drug Buyer: I don't. 
Jimmy Rabbitte: What are you doing here, then? 
Failed Drug Buyer: Well, I saw everyone else lining up, so, uh - I thought you were selling drugs. 

Joey: Look, I know you're hurtin' now, but in time you'll realize what you've achieved. 
Jimmy Rabbitte: I've achieved nothing! 
Joey: You're missin' the point. The success of the band was irrelevant - you raised their expectations of life, you lifted their horizons. Sure we could have been famous and made albums and stuff, but that would have been predictable. This way it's poetry.

Source:  iMDB. More great quotes here.

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