Catholic Recipe: Struan Micheil
Also Called: St. Michael Bannock; St. Michael Cake; Struan Michael; St. Michael Bread; Struan Michel; St. Michael's Bannock; St. Michael's Cake; St. Michael's Bread
In Scotland, Michaelmas was a harvest festival and in the Hebrides they baked a traditional harvest bread or cake (or bannock) made of oats, barley and rye (the fruits of the harvest) in honor of St. Michael. As it is baked, the cake is covered with a batter of cream, eggs and butter, in three layers. It seems no one can find an original recipe of the bannock, as they are no longer baked in Scotland. This recipe is probably the closest to the bannock. Substitute some of the rye flour for barley flour to be more "authentic."
The Feast of St. Michael on September 29 has become a combined feast for the archangels Michael, Raphael and Gabriel. This feast is also called Michaelmas.
Pour the boiling water less a few tablespoons over the oats and allow to stand for an hour. Add the yeast, dissolved in warm water, then add the flours and the salt to the oat and water mixture. Blend well and knead until you have a smooth dough. This may require a little extra wheat flour. Leave to rise until nearly double in bulk. Shape into small loaves, rise again, bake at 425° F for about 50 minutes gradually reducing the heat. Cool on a wire rack.Recipe Source: Food and Cooking of Russia, The by Lesley Chamberlain, Harmondsworth, Penguin, 1983