Saturday, March 16, 2013

soda bread buns.

Maybe you're celebrating St. Patty's Day tomorrow by drinking a couple (or several)pints of Guinness and devouring a large plate of corned beef and cabbage or maybe you have a neighborhood parade you plan on watching or maybe you're like me and you just want to bake something that reminds you of when you celebrated St. Patty's day as a kid.  Every March 17th my mom would always make the requisite corned beef, boiled potatoes, and cabbage as an ode to her Irish roots.  I could never get behind this meal (maybe I just don't have enough Irish in me to appreciate it) but I would always love the loaf of Irish soda bread she would make as well.  It was golden brown, subtly sweet, and studded with currants and caraway seeds.  It was simple and delicious and I could never get enough of it.  I've made it a point to make my own soda bread because they are super easy(beyond easy) to make and I love the familiar taste but this year I wanted something different so I decided to make the Soda Bread Buns the NYTimes wrote about this past week.  These are adorable individual portion buns (that taste exactly like the original I know and love) that make for the perfect breakfast or accompaniment to a pot of afternoon tea.  

Soda Bread Buns
Recipe via the NYTimes 

Makes 8 Buns

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled and cubed, more for greasing pan
155 grams all-purpose flour (1 1/4 cups), more as needed
95 grams whole wheat pastry (or regular) flour ( 3/4 cup)
55 grams sugar ( 1/4 cup)
7 grams baking powder (1 1/2 teaspoons)
5 grams salt (1 teaspoon)
5 grams baking soda ( 3/4 teaspoon)
2/3 cup buttermilk, more for brushing
1 large egg
90 grams dried currants (about 2/3 cup)
8 grams caraway seeds (about 1 1/2 teaspoons)

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease a large rimmed baking sheet.

In a large bowl, whisk together flours, sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda. Using a pastry cutter or your fingers, work in butter until mixture forms coarse crumbs. In a small bowl, whisk together buttermilk and egg. Stir wet mixture into dry one until they just form a moist dough. Stir in currants and caraway seeds.

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Shape into a 7-inch round about 1-inch thick. Cut into 8 wedges. Using lightly floured hands, roll each wedge into a ball and transfer to the prepared baking sheet. Using kitchen shears, snip a small “x” into the top of each bun. (You can also use a knife.) Brush tops with a little buttermilk, and dust lightly with flour.

Transfer baking sheet to oven. Bake until buns are golden brown and firm, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool 10 minutes before serving.  Buns can be stored in an air-tight container for a couple of days.  

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