I’m Back!!

my dear cousin Sally and me, baking wild blackberry and apple struedal in Ballybay

I am back from my glorious whirlwind trip to Ireland and beyond and am ready to embrace fall in the PNW with some baking and pumpkin spice candles.

After my first week back at work…a lonnngggg week, i decided to enjoy my first official weekend without jet lag by remaining in my pjs and working on the magic that is Irish Brown Bread.

I have been searching the internet for that perfect recipe and let me tell you, there are a lot of recipes! and they are all different…arg! I have my work cut out for me.

the first recipe i tried is  from 101 cookbooks. the flavor is awesome but i am not sure if it is my flour or the recipe that made the loaf so light in color?

Onward to a recipe i found at Ballymaloe Cookery School. I went to the visit the school in September and was really excited to see this recipe online! Same flour so we will see if the results are different.

To compliment the bread and this rainy wet day,  i also found a recipe for Mediterranean Lentil Soup in my favorite Alice Waters cookbook called Chez Panisse Vegetables.  When i was in Jordan, i fell in love with their lentil soup because it isnt really thick and stew like, it is a light broth with lentils and sauteed carrots and onion and a squeeze of lemon on top. YUMMMM!

the soup turned out really great!

here is the recipe

Mediterranean Lentil Soup

serves 6-8

1 small onion chopped
1 carrot chopped
2 tbs olive oil
salt and pepper
1 cup of brown lentils rinsed
1/2 cup of red lentils rinsed

1 bunch of parsley
1/2 head of garlic
1/2 fresh hot pepper
2 qts water

1/2 tsp cumin seeds toasted
1 tsp fennel seeds toasted

lemon juice
olive oil

saute onion and carrot in olive oil until tender

combine parsley stems, garlic, and chili pepper in a cheese cloth sack

add lentils, water and cheese cloth sack to the carrots and onions.

bring to a boil and let simmer until the red lentils fall apart and the brown lentils are tender

meanwhile grind toasted cumin and fennel seeds.

add to soup and season to taste with salt and pepper.

drizzle olive oil and sprinkle parsley in bowls before serving.

(on a side note, i added a small cinnamon stick to the cheese cloth sack as well. I also added another quart of water to make more stalk)