Sunday, March 15, 2015

Irish Spice Bread with Whiskey Glaze

Tuesday, we're having a St. Patrick's Day breakfast at Huber. Of the things I've decided to make, I started with an Irish Spice Bread with Whiskey Glaze.

Almost Irish Spice Bread

  • 2 cups white whole wheat flour (or all-purpose)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup candied citron, chopped
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup honey*
  • 1/3 cup molasses*
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup milk
GLAZE (optional):
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 tablespoons Irish whiskey (or orange juice)
  • pinch of sea salt
  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F.
  2. Line a 9×5-inch loaf pan with parchment paper or grease it with butter. (I sometimes like making two smaller loaves–one to enjoy now and a second to stow in the freezer for unexpected guests. The smaller loaves also seem to bake more evenly.)
  3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients. Stir in the raisins and candied citron. Make a well in the center.
  4. In a small sauce pan, melt the butter. Remove it from the heat and stir in the brown sugar and your liquid sweetener(s) of choice. Beat in the egg and milk.
  5. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir until just combined. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan(s). Bake for 50-60 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. (Adjust the baking time if you are using smaller loaf pans.)
  6. Cool on a rack for 20 minutes then remove from the pan. Allow to cool completely before glazing.
  7. To make the glaze, melt the butter in a small saucepan. Remove from heat and whisk in powdered sugar, vanilla, and whiskey or orange juice. Allow the glaze to cool and thicken for 15 minutes. Spoon the glaze into a pastry bag fitted with a large tip or into a sturdy plastic bag with a 1/2-inch opening in the corner. Pipe glaze in a zigzag pattern across the top of the bread.
* The original recipe calls for golden syrup, a product made in the process of refining sugar cane juice into sugar. With no golden syrup in the pantry, I substituted equal parts honey and molasses. You can also substitute light or dark corn syrup.
I couldn't find any candied citron at my local supermarket, nor could I find any citron to candy, so I omitted it. It smells really good, but I'm going to make the glaze Monday night or Tuesday morning, and try it at the breakfast.

**Note** 03/17/15 - The bread was a success! It wasn't too spicy, and it was moist, unlike the Irish Soda Bread that you buy at the grocery store.

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