zoom Parsnip & Gruyère soda bread

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    Parsnip & Gruyère soda bread

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    Parsnip & Gruyère soda bread

    • Preparation time: 15 minutes
    • Cooking time: 50-60 minutes + cooling
    • Total time: 65-75 minutes + cooling

    Makes: 1 loaf (12 servings)


    400g plain white flour, plus extra for dusting
    100g wholemeal bread flour
    1 tsp light brown soft sugar
    1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
    1 tsp fine sea salt
    2 small parsnips, about 150g, grated
    100g Gruyère, grated, plus extra for the top
    2 sprigs of thyme, leaves picked
    284ml pot buttermilk
    160ml whole milk 


    1. Preheat the oven to 200°C, gas mark 6. In a bowl, whisk together the flours, sugar, bicarbonate of soda and salt so they are evenly combined. Add the grated parsnip, Gruyère and thyme leaves, tossing everything together gently with your fingers.

    2. Mix in the buttermilk and milk with your hands or a wooden spoon until you have a fairly loose, wet mixture. Don’t overwork the dough – it will come together naturally as the gluten develops.

    3. Dust a baking tray with flour and lift the dough onto it. Lightly shape the dough into a round, then use a knife to score a cross through the centre. Take the score all the way to the edge and halfway down through the dough so that as the bread cooks, it forms triangles that you can tear apart.

    4. Scatter a little extra flour and Gruyère on the top. Bake for 50-60 minutes until a skewer comes out clean when inserted into a thick part of the loaf. If the skewer is sticky, return the loaf to the oven for another 10 minutes, covering with foil if the crust is turning too dark.

    5. Allow to cool almost completely on a wire rack before tearing and serving with butter and dunking into soup.

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