Join us in celebrating Real Bread Week, with a recipe for Chef Corrigan's Irish Soda Bread!
Situated on the lower ground floor of Bentley’s you can find our bakery supplying the restaurants and Fortnum & Masons. Headed by up Head Baker Karim, each of our breads are created using a Richard Corrigan recipe.
The Bentley’s Irish Soda Bread is a recipe that has been passed on down to Richard from his wife Maria’s mother; a true taste of Ireland. It has been much loved and much adapted over the years in the Bakery, each Head Baker putting his own slight spin on things. The Bentley’s bakers start at 5am every morning, crafting loaves to go alongside our seafood, but also supplying to our sister restaurants, Corrigan’s Mayfair and Daffodil Mulligan, as well as Fortnum and Mason.
The cakey nature of soda and wheaten bread makes it prone to drying out, so putting a damp cloth over it after it has come out of the oven helps to keep as much moisture as possible inside as the bread cools down. You can keep a damp cloth over it until it is finished, but in the restaurant thats never very long! It’s the kind of bread you put out on the table with a meal, and by the end of it the loaf is finished. This bread is heavenly fresh out of the oven and smothered with good salted butter, or topped with crab or salmon for fool-proof canapés. And if you have anything leftover (not likely), toast it the next day to have with a hearty breakfast.
Richard Corrigan's Traditional Irish Soda Bread
makes 2 round loaves
250g plain flour
15g sodium bicarbonate
150g wholemeal flour
150g jumbo oat flakes
1 tbsp clear honey
1 tbsp black treacle
Preparation time: 10 mins, Cooking time: 45 mins
Pre-heat the oven to 200C/gas mark 6 and line a baking sheet with baking parchment.
Combine all of the dry ingredients together in a bowl. Make a well in the centre, then mix in the honey, treacle and buttermilk, working everything together lightly with your hands until you have a loose, wet dough.
Flour your hands and shape the dough into a round and lift it onto the lined baking sheet. Cut a cross in the top (as the loaf cooks this will help to separate it into quarters). Put it into the oven and bake for about 45 minutes or until the loaf sounds hollow when you tap the base with your knuckles.
Put it onto a wire rack, cover with a damp cloth and leave to cool. Serve with butter you can see your teeth in.