/**/ The Purposeful Wife: Homemade Brown Bread with Spelt

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Homemade Brown Bread with Spelt

In honor of my Mother-in-Law being with us this week, I must post about her delicious spelt bread. I craved this bread when pregnant with S, and love having it for breakfast every morning when we're visiting my husband's parents in Ireland, or when my lovely MIL comes to visit us.

You've heard of Irish soda bread (and maybe eat it every St. Patrick's Day), and perhaps you've heard of brown bread? It is a simple whole grain bread with baking soda used as the rising agent instead of yeast. My MIL's variation of it uses spelt, a whole grain much easier on the digestive tract than whole wheat.

I've done my best to figure out her recipe (in Ireland they use weighing scales instead of measuring cups for flour, and Cathy is a cook by the look, not by the book, kind of woman), and I will be sharing it (with her permission, of course!) with you today.

  • About 2 pounds (or 1 kilo if you have a scale) of brown spelt flour (we used Bob's Red Mill brand)
  • 1 pint buttermilk
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda (really, we don't use a measuring tsp, but the tiny proper teaspoon I have from Ireland- it is about half the size of a normal spoon... are you confused? I hope not! I'm sure that a close estimate, or a regular measuring teaspoon would suffice)
  •   2 mugs of oats (just take your average sized morning coffee mug and fill to the top)
  • A smattering of whatever seeds you like (we use pumpkin, sunflower and flax)
In a large mixing bowl, combine spelt flour, oats, baking soda, and seeds to taste. Slowly add buttermilk and stir til batter is just moistened. Pour into two greased 9x5 bread pans. Sprinkle a few more seeds over the top. Dip a spoon in some water, and spread over the tops of batter to help seeds stick, and to smooth the batter so that it is even. Make a small dip in the middle (just a little round indent) to prevent bread from becoming too tall in the middle. Bake in an oven heated to 400 degrees for one hour. Remove and enjoy!

This bread is best toasted, in my opinion. I enjoy it with just butter, my husband likes it with butter and strawberry jam, my FIL with marmalade (an Irish classic), and my MIL with a thin slice of goat's cheese.

Have it for breakfast, and you can feel:
  • Very Irish
  • Very healthy
I sure do :)! 

Linked With: Proverbs 31 Thursday and Passionate and Creative Homemaking


  1. I miss this bread! It was one of my favorite things to eat, all the time, when I was there. There's just something about Irish bread...real Irish bread.

    I love the recipe too =)

  2. I'm totally going to try this. Delicious! Though I'll have to figure out how many cups 2 lbs is...


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