Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Irish Oatmeal Bread

When I heard an advertisement on the television the other day about how households throw away over 50% of the food they buy, I thought how my mother would have cringed.  Now, granted it was focused on storage bags and preventing freezer burn, but nonetheless, why not reinvent the leftover to make something else. You see, when you have a family of eight, you don't throw anything away!

My mother was the Queen of Leftovers--using her magic to make the next day's meal seem like new.  So, with this in mind, when I had leftover Irish Oatmeal from our breakfast this morning, I decided to create a new recipe around it.  Yes, I could have "nuked" it for the next day's breakfast, but because I had been away, I needed to make bread for the week and the light bulb went on.

It's another rainy, cool day here in the Pacific Northwest; so good for baking.  After all, I was already in the mood after baking up a batch of bagels and setting out ingredients to make Spiderman Cake Pops to send to Ari for his 4th birthday tomorrow.  This recipe easily makes two loaves, but I decided to bake it in my Pullman bread pan for one large loaf.

Irish Oatmeal Bread
1 pkg. (1 T) active dry yeast
1/2 cup very warm water (about 110F-degrees)
1 tsp. honey
In a 1 cup measure, whisk the dry yeast and honey into the water and allow to set for 5 to 7 minutes until foamy.  This is called proofing the yeast.
While the yeast is proofing, heat the following ingredients in a small sauce pan over med/low heat:
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup honey
3 T unsalted butter (I used Kerrygold Irish Butter!)
2 T Boiled Cider
When the butter has melted remove from the heat.

In a stand mixer, using the dough hook, add the following:

1 to 1 1/4 cups leftover cooked Irish Oatmeal
5 1/2 cups (+ up to another 1/2 cup as needed) King Arthur Bread Flour
2 tsp. Kosher salt
1 tsp. ground cinnamon

Mix on the #2 speed until combined.  Add the honey/butter mixture while the mixer is running, then the proofed yeast.  Add additional flour, as needed until the sides of the bowl are clean and the dough is clinging to the dough hook.
Sprinkle a board lightly with flour and turn out the dough.  Knead a few times, with the heel of your hand, pushing away, then making a turn and push again.

When the dough is smooth, place it in a large bowl or dough rising bucket, like I use.

Let rise an hour, or until doubled in size.
Turn out dough, once again, onto a lightly floured board.  Flatten into a rectangle, the length of the loaf pan(s) you are using.  Roll up the dough, towards you, pushing down to seal the roll.  When you get to the last roll, pinch the ends together.  Place the dough, pinched side down, into a lightly oiled Pullman loaf pan (or divide dough in half and use two 9" x 5" loaf pans).

Spray a piece of plastic wrap with a baking spray and lay over top the loaf pan(s).  Let rise, again, for 45 minutes or until doubled.

Before the bread finishes rising, heat the oven to 350F-degrees.  Remove the plastic wrap and spray with Quick Shine and sprinkle with some Old-fashioned Oatmeal.  (It's a way of letting people know what's in your bread!)

Bake for 35 minutes or until an "Instant Read" thermometer registers 180-190F-degrees in the center of the bread and the top is a golden brown.
Allow the bread to cool completely before slicing.  Heaven knows this is the hardest part about making homemade bread!
This bread turned out with the best texture and full of wonderful flavor.  My hubby said it's by far, his favorite, but then, he says that about every bread I make.  The moral of this post...think about reinventing the leftover you might throw out and you too can come up with a winner.  Enjoy!


  1. That bread looks so good and sounds so healthy! A great way to get more oatmeal in my diet, too!

    1. That's what I thought! In a few weeks, I will have the grands here and need to be in shape:-D

  2. Such a lovely loaf Susan! I feel very passionate about not wasting food. I can't imagine folks throwing away 50% of the food they buy. Thanks for all you share. ♥
    Martha Ellen

    1. We also finished everything we put on our plates--my parents would say, "there are children in China who go to bed hungry." Sadly, that's epidemic here in the United States today. Thank you for your comment and listening, dear friend. XOXO

  3. Wow, Susan, looks like you get back from your visit and went straight in the kitchen. The bread looks fantastic. I would love to try a slice.
    I just decided the other day that I needed one of those dough rising buckets. For now I use a plastic lemonade pitcher that I mark when filling in the dough.
    Could you please send some of your rainy weather towards Colorado? It is so hot and the fires are getting worse every day.

    1. Oh, Kirsten, if I could, I would. We have so many friends (you included) that are affected by these fires. Kelly went to school at Colorado State in Fort Collins and I keep in touch with her friends and colleagues, so I feel their concern. It's so hard to see how much damage as been caused and the people who have lost their homes. You all are in our prayers. XOXO

  4. 50% wastage seems wicked to me. Nothing gets thrown away here,most things can be repurposed!
    Jane x

    1. Mine either! I tell people that I was raised right:-) BTW do you all see the connection of this Sisterhood? We really could be sisters:-D XOXO

  5. That looks so good. I love baking bread, the kneading is therapeutic - and the smell of new baked bread is pretty near the top of my top ten favourite smells.
    I will be using this recipe at the weekend, if mine turns out even half as well as yours did Jonny will be deeply impressed! xx

    1. I'm sure Jonny is like my girls--no matter what I bake, they love it! I think the kneading is therapeutic too; not only does it release stress, but takes me back to baking with my mother.
      Today is a hard day because it's my grandson's birthday and I'm wishing, with all my heart, his mama was here to see what a wonderful, smart, loving and very funny child he is. He definitely keeps a smile on my face. I'm so happy your son is home again...there's nothing like having them close. XOXO

    2. Oh, how I wish I could give you a hug. xxx

  6. yum! and good for you. when life gives you leftover oatmeal, make oatmeal bread!!

  7. You make this look so easy, Susan, I almost think I could do this on my own. I just need to practice the proofing part. :) I'm sure it is simply the best breakfast, too, toasted with some of the Irish butter and jam. :) Lv, me.

    1. Oh, it is and I wish I could send everyone a slice to try...sometimes, I even surprise myself with these crazy recipes that pop in my head! Love you, Me

  8. fresh baked bread is the best!
    stamping sue


Cloud Bread

So much to do and so little time before I go to the U.K. to do their craft show, Hochanda (it's like QVC or HSN).  Thanks to my good ...