Bread Machine Irish Brown Bread

Bread Machine Irish Brown Bread
One of the reasons Irish Brown Bread is so good in Ireland is that it’s made with Irish wholemeal flour. There is a difference between wholemeal flour and whole wheat flour, in that whole wheat flour is ground much finer and, depending on how its milled, usually doesn’t contain as much of the bran, germ and endosperm as wholemeal flour. While wholemeal flour is used extensively in Europe, it’s hard to find in the US and often must be ordered online. I purchased an Irish cookbook while in Ireland recently, and have adapted a recipe from that book to make Bread Machine Irish Brown Bread in my automatic bread machine. This recipe is the closest (after several not-so-successful attempts) I have come to what I tasted in Ireland, and it is very nutty and good, especially cooled and spread with a ridiculous amount of Irish butter, or toasted. While many Irish Brown Bread recipes are made with baking soda and don’t contain yeast, I found that this yeasted version is lighter and better than the soda bread versions.
I ground my own wheat for this bread a little coarser than usual (you can do this too if you happen to have a wheat grinder), and then I added some wheat bran and wheat germ to the bread to make it closer to what the Irish would use. I also tried it with store-bought whole wheat flour with good results. This one is a winner (finally), and since unfortunately we all can’t go to Ireland whenever we crave their incredible bread, we’ll just have to settle for this version which is excellent and made easily in the automatic bread machine. Incidentally, if you prefer to bake this bread in the oven (I do), simply put it in the bread machine on the dough setting, shape the dough into a loaf, and bake it in the oven. Make sure you spray it well with water to create steam and a crisp crust. Either way, this bread is delicious.

Makes 1 large loaf

1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup dry milk
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup pinhead oats, also known as Irish oatmeal (optional, but adds a nutty texture)
1/4 cup wheat bran
4 cups whole wheat flour, preferably coarsely ground
3 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons butter, preferably Irish
1 tablespoon dry yeast

  1. Place all ingredients into the pan of an automatic bread machine in the order given. Set the machine to whole wheat bread, and start.
  2. After 10 minutes of mixing, check to make sure the dough is soft, but not soft enough to lose its shape. Let the cycle run.
  3. Alternately, set the cycle to dough and when finished, shape into a loaf and place in a standard bread pan that has been well greased.
  4. Let the bread rise until doubled in bulk.
  5. Bake in a preheated 375º oven until browned and sounds hollow when tapped, about 45 minutes.
  6. If the loaf if browning too much, place a piece of foil loosely over the top.
  7. When the loaf is done, remove from the oven, let sit 5 minutes, then invert onto a cooling rack

Amount Per Serving
Calories 198 Calories from Fat 26
Percent Total Calories From: Fat 13% Protein 16% Carb. 71%

Nutrient Amount per Serving
Total Fat 3 g
Saturated Fat 1 g
Cholesterol 6 mg
Sodium 340 mg
Total Carbohydrate 35 g
Dietary Fiber 6 g
Sugars 0 g
Protein 8 g

Vitamin A 4% Vitamin C 0% Calcium 0% Iron 10%

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