Close-up bread in the oven
Food - Drink
The History Of Waterford, Ireland's Famous Blaa Bread
What is Blaa Bread?
Getting its name from the Huguenot “blaad” meaning flour or the French “blanc” meaning white, Irish blaa bread is a white bread roll dusted with flour, and it is known for being exceptionally doughy and soft. While a white bread roll doesn’t sound particularly special, blaa's unique origins earned it a Protected Geographical Indication.
The History of Blaa
When bread was first baked in Ireland, recipes called for hearty ingredients like oats and grains rather than wheat, which didn’t grow well in the finicky climate. This changed when French Protestants arrived, bringing with them their bread-making traditions, particularly white bread or “pain blanc,” which the locals called “blaa.”
How to Make Blaa
Blaa is made using only flour, yeast, salt, and water, and although the recipe is quite simple it requires patience. The bread goes through multiple rises, totaling over four hours, and after each rise, the rolls are given another coating of flour which gives the bread its texture and helps protect the dough while it bakes.
How to Eat Blaa
Blaa tastes better the fresher it is, so you’ll probably have to get up early to get the freshest roll possible. Once you have your blaa, you can slather it in Irish butter for a simple and traditional snack, opt to fill it with onion and cheese-flavored potato chips for a local take on comfort food, or make it into a sandwich.