Top o' the mornin' to ya and the rest of the day to myself.
Sorry, just get ready for the original green holiday. Over here at TCC a lot of work goes into St. Paddy's Day.
I know what you’re thinking, what's an Italian guy from the North Shore know about Paddy?
Well, let me tell you this -- I, Robert Geraldo Antonio Leo Jr., personally make every loaf of Irish soda bread that is served with all our traditional Irish meals on St Paddy's day, and have for years. And each and every one of those years my counterpart Judy tells me the story of her old Irish Grandma and her green ceramic baking pan with the little chip in it. It's become a little tradition and always concludes with " and make sure you use caraway seeds! ".
So let me tell you a little about this traditional Irish bread that was actually invented by Native Americans.
That right, American Indians were the first to use potash and sour milk to create the leavening for this simple and affordable bread. It was in the early 1800's that American shippers began trading soft wheat for Irish lace and other Irish commodities.
When the Great Famine set in Soda bread was a great way to use the buttermilk and the spoilage of Irish dairy farms and the cheap soft wheat imported from America. It is estimated that 80 to 90% of Ireland's wheat came from across the pond. Soft wheat has far less gluten and doesn't bind or react with yeast as well so it became less desirable than traditional hard wheat. In 1835 the Royal Baking Powder Co. of Great Britain was founded and soda bread really took off. Each clan or village had their own spin and "best recipe" for their favorite bread and the rest is history.
Now if you think I'm throwin' you some malarkey (not really sure how to spell malarkey or what it actually is) but if you think I'm throwin' it come on down on Paddy's week-end Saturday the 16th or of course Sunday the 17th and try slice for yourself. And don't worry Judy I won't forget the caraway.