Irish Common Brown Bread

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Irish Common Brown Bread

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Published prior to 2008

This recipe was developed by Robyn Brown Sargent, one of our baker education specialists. She notes that we should expect a sticky dough with this brown bread -- but fear not, the bread machine handles this kind of dough well. Also, expect the finished loaf to have a flat top, or even sink a bit in the center.

One (2-pound) Loaf
2 cups (16 ounces) water
2 tablespoons (1 ounce) molasses or black treacle
2 teaspoons salt
3 1/2 cups (14 3/4 ounces) King Arthur 100% White Whole Wheat Flour
3/4 cup (3 5/8 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
2 teaspoons instant yeast

Place all of the ingredients into the pan of your bread machine in the order recommended by the manufacturer. Program the machine for Dough or Manual, and press Start. Check the dough's consistency about 7 minutes after the kneading cycle begins, adding additional water or flour to form a sticky dough. Allow the machine to complete its cycle. Remove the dough.

Turn the sticky dough into a buttered 9 x 5-inch loaf pan. Cover with greased plastic wrap and let it rise for 20 to 30 minutes, until it reaches the top of the pan.

Bake the bread in a preheated 450°F oven for 10 minutes. Reduce the heat to 425°F and bake for an additional 35 minutes; the interior temperature of the finished loaf as measured on an instant-read thermometer should be about 190°F. Turn the bread out of the pan, and cool it on a rack before slicing. Yield: 1 loaf.

Nutrition information per serving (1/16 of loaf, 53g): 111 cal, <1g fat, 4g protein, 22g complex carbohydrates, 2g sugar, 3g dietary fiber, 269mg sodium, 159mg potassium, 2mg iron, 28mg calcium, 98mg phosphorus.

This recipe reprinted from The Baking Sheet Newsletter, Vol. XI, No. 6, Autumn 2000 issue.


  • star rating 04/02/2010
  • Susan from Boston
  • I've made this three times now, and each time it's come out a little different--but it's always good! I have found that adding water/flour as needed at that 7-minute point is truly critical. The first time I needed a little water, and the next two times I needed some flour--first about a tablespoon, and then the next time, about 2 tablespoons. This may be because I measure by volume vs. weight, or just that our weather has been nuts...whatever the reason, it seems not to affect the outcome of the bread, which has always been fabulous. Great for toast & eggs or for any type of sandwich.
  • star rating 03/17/2010
  • Garden Goddess from California
  • Normally, I LOVE your recipes...what happened here??? Yup, I screwed up--but the recipe was screwy too! The recipe did state that it would be a soft dough, but what I got was a nasty, sticky batter that even stuck to the inside of the bread machine when I tried to dump it out... Foolishly, I wasn't paying close attention and did not pour it directly into the bread pan, but instead planned to knead it a few times before I shaped it and put it into the pan, like I usually do--which was totally impossible. I tried to add more flour to make it "workable" but finally gave up with my sticky "dough-club" hands and scrapped it back into the bread machine and added a total of two more cups of white flour and had the machine do the mixing. This time it at least all came out of the machine! I'm getting ready to bake it now--but it took me 20 minutes to clean up the sticky gooey mess-which spread everywhere, including over the bread board onto the floor! I THOUGHT that 2 cups was way too much water! But seriously, even if I hadn't screwed-up and had poured the dough directly into the pan, at least 1/4 of the dough stuck inside of the bread machine pan and would have been a royal pain to deal with... I'm just glad I used the bread machine with the removable paddle! Do be prepared if you ever want to try this recipe--YIKES! Oh, and Happy St. Patrick's Day to you all... Cheers, Garden Goddess
  • star rating 12/12/2009
  • Priscilla O'Kelly from Carrabassett Valley, Maine
  • Absolutely wonderful and so easy to make. Great with Irish stew!