Inspired by my recent trip to Northern Ireland, I returned keen to get baking some wheaten bread. It is, for me, one of the most delicious breads to enjoy at breakfast time, maybe with some salmon, scrambled eggs, or just butter and jam.
Wheaten bread is widely enjoyed in Northern Ireland and I just love it. It’s often made in a loaf tin, as opposed to the freeform shape of a traditional soda bread, which makes it a great loaf for slicing. It is just sensational eaten freshly baked and buttered, but it is also fantastic toasted after a day or two.
I like to make wheaten bread using half white flour and half wholemeal flour. The treacle adds a dark colour and deep, treacle flavour, and the honey adds a light sweetness, and I think it’s important to use both in the recipe. This is a sweeter, richer and denser bread than traditional soda bread.
So many of you have written to me to say how much you enjoyed the soda bread recipe I posted recently. It is always tremendously exciting to hear from my readers, new and old, and I’m always touched you make the time to contact me.
One thing that has come out of your emails is how well my recipes work, which is great news. As a full-time food writer, I know how important it is to get recipes just right, I feel I owe it to you all, and you may not know that I test every single recipe I publish, both in my books and on my blog at least three times before publishing, just to be sure it’s just right for you all. I really hope you enjoy this recipe too.
- 500ml whole milk
- 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 250g plain flour
- 250g Wholemeal plain flour
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 150g porridge oats
- 30g honey
- 30g treacle
- Preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/Gas Mark 5.
- Grease a 900g loaf tin with flavourless oil and set aside.
- Start by placing the milk into a jug. Pour the lemon juice into the milk and stir. Set aside until it’s required in the next step of the recipe. The lemon juice will sour the milk and turn it into homemade buttermilk.
- Sift the flours, salt and bicarbonate of soda into a large mixing bowl. Stir to combine. Add the oats, but reserve two tablespoons to sprinkle on top of the loaf. Stir again.
- Now, whisk the honey and treacle into the milk. Pour the wet mixture into the dry ingredients in the mixing bowl and stir gently to just combine. Gently spoon the bread mixture into your prepared loaf tin. Smooth off the top of the loaf and sprinkle with the reserved oats.
- Bake for 45-55 minutes until browned and the crumb is crisp. Allow to cool in the tin for ten minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool fully.
- Serve when still a touch warm, if you like. It freezes superbly and keeps for up to three days.