Barmbrack, Irish Fruit Bread

Sat, Mar 13, 2010

Bread, Recipes

Instead of the usual soda bread for St. Patrick’s day, how about some Barmbrack? Barmbrack is a traditional Irish fruit bread. It’s said that traditionally the yeast used in this bread was skimmed from the top of fermenting beer!

    Serves 8
    Time required 60 minutes
    Difficulty level 3
    Cost of ingredients 8 USD

  • ½ cup (125ml) lukewarm milk
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar, very fine or granulated
  • 2 cups (250g) flour
  • 1 package(2 ¼ teaspoon or 8g) yeast
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 cups (200g) mixed fruit, currants/raisins/dates/etc
  • ¾ cup black tea, boiling
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon allspice
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

First, soak the mixed fruit in the tea for several hours or overnight. If you don’t have the time for that, soak it for as long as you can.

In a bowl proof the yeast with a teaspoon of sugar in milk, should be about 15 minutes and frothy.

Sift or whisk the rest of the sugar and flour together. Using your fingers, rub the butter into flour, it should not be grainy when done.  Add the yeast, egg and the spices. Drain the liquid from the fruit and add it to the flour bowl. Mix well to make a smooth dough (add more flour if it’s too wet).

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead well.

Place the dough in a lightly oiled cake tin, cover with a cloth and leave in a warm place for about 45 minutes to allow it to rise.  It’s ready when it’s doubled in size.

Place the bread in a preheated oven at 400F (200C) for 45 minutes, or when the sides of the bread are tapped and it sounds hollow. Allow to cool on a wire rack before serving.

Serve buttered with a cup of tea!

Photo by underclasscameraman.

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This post was written by:

Rochelle - who has written 324 posts on Made in Kitchen Blog.

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