Guest Author - Phyllis Doyle Burns
In honor of St. Patrick's Day, I have some awesome recipes for you. The first recipe is an Ulster Fry, which is a traditional Irish breakfast. It is sometimes called a "full breakfast" or a "fry up". I also included two Irish bread recipes.
My father was part Irish on his father's side, so that makes me part Irish and I wholeheartedly claim that ancestry. St. Patrick's day is a very special day in our home. Everyone has the corned beef and cabbage, potatoes, and mixed vegetables for supper. I thought to change a little here and present a recipe I have not done before. So, going for breakfast, I have the Ulster Fry -- it is a really hearty breakfast, which can be served for any meal.
The Ulster Fry is a tradition from Northern Ireland. It usually includes Irish bacon, sausage, blood pudding (another type of sausage), eggs and farls of soda bread and potato bread. You may be wondering what a farl is -- it is a small thin triangular or rectangular piece of bread.
Strong black tea is the usual drink to serve with this meal.
Have ready the following foods for each person:
1 or 2 Irish Bacon slices
1 or 2 of one or two types sausage
1 or 2 slices Black pudding (optional)
1 Tomato, sliced
3 or 4 mushrooms, sliced
2 Soda bread farls
2 Potato bread farls
Preheat oven to 300 degrees and set oven proof serving plates in oven. Fry bacon and sausages (do not include the black pudding in this fry) in large skillet, medium heat, till browned. Place meats on dishes in oven to keep warm. Fry the soda and potato farls in the meat fat in same pan till they are crispy and golden. In a smaller skillet, fry tomato slices, mushrooms, and black pudding slices. Transfer all food to the warm plates and serve immediately.
Potato Bread Farls
This recipe will make 8 farls
2 large russet potatoes (1 pound), baked, peeled, and cooled - or, left over mashed potatoes
4 Tablespoons butter
1/2 to 1 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
Mash the baked potatoes or use a potato ricer, making sure there are no lumps. Add salt, butter and 1/2 cup flour. Mix well and knead the dough till smooth, adding a little more flour as needed to prevent stickiness. Divide dough in half and roll each half on a flour dusted board, to an 8 inch round -- it should be about 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. Cut each round into four quarters.
Sprinkle a little flour in a cast iron skillet and heat on low. Cook the farls till lightly browned on both sides, about five minutes on each side.
Irish Soda Bread Farls
Makes one 9 by 5 inch loaf
3 cups all purpose flour
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 cups buttermilk (or a good Irish stout)
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup melted butter
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease loaf pan and set aside. I large bowl, blend the dry ingredients. In a smaller bowl, blend egg and buttermilk (or stout) then add to dry ingredients. Mix till entirely moistened. Add melted butter and stir till blended. Pour batter into loaf pan and bake for one hour, a little longer if needed (maybe 10 minutes) till toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
Cool loaf on wire rack. Soda bread develops its best flavor if wrapped in foil when cool and left overnight. For farls, slice about 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick and in half again the long way, for rectangles.
Enjoy your Ulster Fry.