Sunday, March 1, 2009

Happy March! - - Irish Soda Bread


If you've never had Irish Soda Bread, you're in for a treat. It is a dense bread that is perfect out of the oven with a bit of butter and a hot drink. It is another one of my "adult" treats, meaning it is not too sweet. Valiant won't eat it because he boycotts raisins, but the other kids like it. I found the recipe in a magazine years and years ago (I think it might have been LHJ, but I can't swear by that) and I've been making it ever since. Try it, you won't be disappointed...

Irish Soda Bread
2 3/4 cup all-purpose flour, plus 1/4 cup flour - divided
1/3 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
2/3 cup raisins

Preheat oven to 325.

Line large cookie sheet with parchment powder. [I just use my Pampered Chef stone.]

Whisk together 2 3/4 cup flour with sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir in raisins.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs and buttermilk.

Stir buttermilk-egg mixture into dry ingredients using a wooden spoon. Mix until just combined. [Dough will be really sticky.]

Take remaining 1/4 cup of flour and sprinkle onto work surface. Lightly flour hands and turn and knead dough to incorporate the flour. Form the dough into a 6 inch round and place on cookie sheet [or stone] and cut a deep "x" in the top of the loaf.

Bake until toothpick inserted in center comes clean or about 60 minutes. [Yesterday, mine took 50 minutes.] Transfer to cooling rack.

Slice with serrated knife (a bread knife) and serve with butter and jam.

Notes:

This dough can be really, really sticky. I kind of decide whether or not 1/4 cup is enough when I'm doing the kneading...if flouring my hands isn't enough to keep the dough from sticking to my hands, then I add a bit more.

Make the "X" deep. When I first tried this recipe, I didn't make my "X" deep enough and the crust cooked first and the dough couldn't expand...crusty-mush-filled-soda bread wasn't very good. So I learned...deep "x"!

This time I made this recipe using powdered buttermilk and it turned out great, so I will no longer need to run to the store for fresh buttermilk when I'm wanting this treat. [The ladies at Everyday Food Storage have convinced me to try things like this. They're are all about a well-stocked pantry and recipes that use staples.] Using powdered buttermilk was a bit odd, however, because you add the buttermilk powder to the dry ingredients and use water in place of the buttermilk in the recipe. So, in this recipe, I added the buttermilk powder to my dry ingredients and mixed water with the eggs. I turned out well, but it was strange when I was doing it.

8 comments:

Melissa Henning said...

yum! I've never had Irish Soda Bread before but if you say it's good--sold!

I think that I just might make this now, seeing that I have all the ingredients on hand (except for the buttermilk but I will use a substitute :)).

Thanks for sharing :).

Erin said...

Let me know how you like them...

Clark said...

I have never particularly liked scones in the past because they are always kind of dry and gross. These on the other hand were fabulous! They were dense, but not dry and stiff. Great flavor for a cup of hot tea. The pictures do not do them justice.

momstheword said...

Looks yummy and your game night sounds like fun. We used to do something like that and we really need to get it going again. I think Fridays would work better for us than Saturday though.

Erin said...

Clark, so does this mean you didn't like the Irish Soda Bread 'cause you posted your scone review on the Soda Bread post!

Moms..we sat down and figured out what would work best for our family, first off, then spread the word through the neighborhood. Saturdays work better than you'd think because people head home at a decent hour so they can make it to church on time. I don't have to worry about sleepover requests from the younger ones and adults who don't want to head home. (Like you said, once we're past 9 or 10, I'm starting to wind down!)

loveaphid said...

I'm with Valiant, raisins are not for me. I only like them in cereal or by the handful. I love Irish Soda Bread. I'll give this recipe a try sans the raisins.

Tricia said...

I remember your giving me this recipe years ago! You even printed it with little green shamrocks on the paper :) Thanks - I'll be making it for St. Patrick's Day.

Erin said...

Tricia, you're right...when I pulled it out of my computer to make it, it still had the shamrocks from when I did it for you!

Love-Valiant will be thrilled to know he's not alone!