As a lot of my readers will know, I love to take photographs and have done since I was 14. My first job was as a photographic lab technician in charge of enlargements for the company and correcting photographs that had things in them that needed to vanish, a process called spotting. I had to spot away everything from dust marks to some, well, how do I put it, penis erasing. Yes, you read correctly, usually, a big group shot and there would be in the photo a man with his bits out. It was very enjoyable to do and made me laugh quite a lot, and surprised me how many men got their junk out on photos. I would always ensure that the offending item was erased and no one could ever tell. Now that is easy with the use of digital photography, and I have done some of my best corrections using the likes of Photoshop, especially on old photos that have fold marks and tears on them.
Anyways, I was invited to join a photography site and now have some of my work there. But, I did not want to let you all away without seeing some of my prize images.
My Hubby is Irish, so many many years ago I learned how to make proper Irish Soda Bread, Wheaten Bread & Soda Farls. Since winter is well and truly on its way, and it is lashing with rain outside I thought I would make us some. I thought I would share my recipe and do a show and tell.
- 250g Plain Flour
- 1 teaspoon of Baking Soda
- ½ teaspoon of salt (I use sea salt)
- 250ml Buttermilk
Place all dry ingredients into a bowl and mix.
Make a well and add the buttermilk, although do not add it all as you can keep adding whilst mixing rather than make it too wet.
Mix and knead the dough on a floured surface, but be gentle, you really only want to knead it into shape. Slice a cross into the top with a sharp knife that has been floured.
Pop the farl onto a hot griddle pan, or if you only have a frying pan, that will work nicely, but again, be gentle, don’t go in at too high a temperature or you will end up with a crispy dough ball. I use a tepanyaki grill plate to make mine and have the temperature about 150c.
Partway through cooking flip it over and cook the other side.
Again flip it over, and tap the base to see if it is cooking, it should make a hollow sound, and if not carry on cooking.
As you can see the farl has split where the score marks were and have browned nicely. Finally, when you are happy with it, wrap it in a tea cloth and set aside, this will ensure that it finishes off cooking and traps moisture, and makes it chewy, and brings out the subtle soda taste. I used to use a proper Irish Linnen tea cloth, but alas it bit the dust some time ago.
It should take about 20 minutes to cook through.
Once it has cooled split it into four, then slice through the side horizontally, so you end up with 8 quarters if you cut it all at once. Toast and enjoy with lashings of butter and a slice of mature cheese like cheddar. Also delicious with bacon and egg.