Thursday, March 17, 2011

Irish Soda Bread

Happy St. Patrick's Day!  I decided to venture out and make something Irish and festive for you.  The funny thing is  - and I realized this as I pulled the bread out of the oven - I've never actually had soda bread.  I have no idea what it even tastes like.  Hmmmmm... I'm not sure what the thought process behind my choice was other than, "Ooh!  Something to bake!  I have all the ingredients!"  Lucky for me (get it? lucky?), Bo is actually half Irish, so he's had soda bread made by his Irish mom.  Phew!  A resident expert at my beck and call!  Ok, so Bo claims that this bread is good, and I agree.  It does have great flavor.  It's kind of like a biscuit in texture, and definitely crumbly.  I don't know that I'll be making it again, but it was fun and now I have something yummy to toast for breakfast tomorrow.


Easy Irish Soda Bread
adapted from Allrecipes

4 c. all-purpose flour
4 Tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 c. butter, softened
1 c. buttermilk
1 egg
1/2 c. raisins
2 Tbsp. butter, melted
2 Tbsp. buttermilk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease a large baking sheet.  In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.  Cut in the butter with a knife or a pastry blender. Stir in 1 cup of buttermilk, the egg, and the raisins. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead slightly. Form dough into a round  and flatten a little, and then place on prepared baking sheet. In a small bowl, combine melted butter with 1/4 cup buttermilk; brush loaf with this mixture. Use a sharp knife to cut an 'X' into the top of the loaf.  Brush the loaf with the butter mixture while it bakes.  Bake 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.

Let's talk about this butter for a moment.  It's Honey Browned Butter.  Have you ever made browned butter?  It's one of the most amazing smells on the planet, trust me.  And then you add in honey - yum.  And then a sprinkle of sea salt - yum.  I'm pretty sure that you could slather this stuff on brussel sprouts and they'd be better than dessert.  Ok, almost.  Dessert is pretty sacred with me.  The recipe for the butter is here on Smitten Kitchen.

Also?  Please tell me that I'm not the only one who's made a recipe for something she's never even tasted?  What have you done that was completely unknown?  Was it amazing or did it bomb on ya?


  1. I have always wondered about soda bread. I just may have to try it now. Thanks and happy St. Patty's!

  2. Thanks, Traci!

    Update: This bread is really great toasted. It's definitely crumbly, but toasting it brings out the flavor and texture. And then, there's that heavenly browned butter spread. Yum.


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