Every year I go to make my annual Irish Soda Bread, and every year I make the same mistake. You'd think I would have learned by now, right?
Every year, I plan to make my Soda Bread. I think about how delicious it's going to taste, about seeing that unique "x" cut into the top, about the sweet raisins in dough. When I've done my food shopping for the week, I'm always proud of myself for remembering the raisins. I don't really eat raisins so they're never a pantry staple, so the fact that I've added them to my shopping list and actually remembered to buy them is pretty impressive for me. So here we go...ready to make that bread. I scan the recipe and BAM...there it is...buttermilk. Yes, in addition to raisins there's another unique ingredient this bread needs and its buttermilk.
I promise I'm not making this up, I forget this every year and have to make a special trip bake to the store just for this. Maybe writing about it in this detail will make me remember next year?
This brings me to something else, I don't know why I only make this once a year. This is a GREAT bread. It's incredibility easy...no yeast, no waiting to rise. Just mix everything together, do a little light kneading to get the right shape, then bake! It also has a refreshing sweet flavor unlike any other bread. This makes a great snack with coffee or even a breakfast item.
The spoiler is about this, the "soda" in here is baking soda. As a kid, I always thought I was eating bread make with actual drinking soda, when I learned it was just a leavening agent I was pretty bummed. Honestly, I'm still kind bummed it's not a super cool bread made with soda.
- 4 cups flour
- 4 tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 4 tablespoons cold butter, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
- 1 3/4 cups cold buttermilk, shaken
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1 cup raisins
1. Heat oven to 375. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. If you don't have parchment, I just greased the bottom of my pan so the bread won't stick.
Combine the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt with an electric mixer
with the paddle attachment. Add the butter and mix on low until the
butter is combined.
3. Lightly beat the egg in the
buttermilk and with the mixer on low speed pour into flour mixture. Mix
the raisins in a tablespoon of flour and add into the dough.
4. Flour your counter-top and your hands. Dump the dough on the flour and lightly knead a few times until you get a round loaf. It will be very sticky at first so make sure you have enough flour so it doesn't stick to your hands.
Place the loaf onto the baking sheet and cut an 'X' into the top with a
serrated knife. Bake for 50-55 minutes, until a knife comes out clean. I only needed to bake 50 minutes and it was done perfectly.
Source: Barefoot Contessa