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Irish Soda Bread

Irish Soda Bread

What better to go with Irish lamb stew on Saint Patrick's Day than some Irish soda bread? Irish soda bread is a quick bread that uses baking soda rather than yeast. Traditional soda bread consists of only flour, baking soda, salt and buttermilk. The buttermilk reacts with the baking soda to produce carbon dioxide and thus rise. I decided to go with the brown soda bread which replaces half of the flour with whole wheat flour. I also decided to add some rolled oats for additional texture and flavour. I halved the recipe as I did not want to have too much in the way of leftovers. Soda bread would normally just be hand formed and baked on a baking sheet but I decided to put it into a loaf pan to give it a loaf shape. While looking for recipes I saw several that called for some non-traditional ingredients such as raisins, caraway seeds, etc.

The soda bread was the easiest bread that I have ever made. You just mix everything and bake it. It turned out pretty good. The crust was crispy and crunchy without being too hard and the inside was nice and soft and light. I timed it such that the bread came out of the oven at the same time that the stew was done so I got to have the bread while it was still warm from the oven. Of course I had to spread some butter on a few slices to melt into the bread. Melting butter on freshly baked bread is one of my favorite things. Given how easy this bread is to make it would be little trouble to make it for almost any meal.

Ingredients:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup rolled oats
1 cup buttermilk

Directions:
1. Mix the flour, baking soda, salt and rolled oats in a bowl.
2. Mix in the buttermilk and form a dough.
3. Shape the dough and place it on a baking sheet or in a loaf pan.
4. Bake in a preheated 375F oven for 40 minutes (the top should be golden brown).

Goes well with:
Irish Lamb Stew

More St Patrick’s Day recipes!

52 comments:

Anj said...

Oooh, I'm all about the quick breads. I'm definitely tagging this recipe for future baking. Looks wonderful.

Susan said...

It's beautiful and I'm sure it was fantastic with the stew.

Thanks for participating in BBD!

Peter M said...

Kevin, I've never heard of this bread but it does look quite good.

I'm liking the oats in it too!ibuufv

Brilynn said...

I don't know why I've never made this before, it looks awesome and I love bread in any form!

Kalyn said...

That's pretty funny; I was bookmarking your Irish Soda Bread recipe (wondering if I can make it with white whole wheat flour) while you were bookmarking my Sauteed Chickpeas recipe.

Cate said...

That bread looks amazingly good, especially for such an easy recipe! Totally hitting our menu this weekend.

VeggieGirl said...

mmm, I ADORE Irish soda bread - looks quite scrumptious!

maybahay said...

what a wonderful, simple recipe for bread. will try this with your stew (and the husband will appreciate it with guinness, i'm sure)

Elly said...

Looks great, Kevin! I like quick breads like Irish soda bread and beer bread too. I like the oats in this...I may have to copy you :)

javagirlkt's cookin' said...

wow, this does sound easy and quick.
looks good!!
melted butter + warm bread = :)

Neen said...

Interesting! I think I got scared off by Irish Soda bread when an article came out about it in the Nytimes dining section about a year ago, which essentially said that the type of Irish Soda bread that we bake in North America is nothing like the original Irish version, which is actually pretty dry and gross (so said the article). Your blog post may be my first step toward reconciling my relationship with Irish Soda Bread!

Cynthia said...

Kevin, this soda bread looks better than the last soda bread I saw in the New York Times online. No kidding! You are outdoing yourself in the kitchen these days. Great job!

cakewardrobe said...

That looks fantastic.. I didn't know such perfection could be so easy! I must give it a try for myself!

tigerfish said...

Look like everything is set for St Pat Day. First the lamb stew, now the soda bread! WHOA!

LisaRene said...

Quick breads are wonderful, delicious and, well... quick! This is very similar to beer bread. Nice idea to add the oats.

eatme_delicious said...

Oh my Kevin you do not know how good that bread looks to me right now. And with butter, mmm perfect.

Mochachocolata Rita said...

i gotta try baking bread someday (so many on my to do list...how can i ever catch up ^_^)

Cafe Johnsonia said...

Wow, Kevin! Your blog is awesome.

Just when I was getting ready to search for an Irish Soda Bread recipe and an Irish Stew recipe, I click on over here. Thanks! Can't wait to try this!

aforkfulofspaghetti said...

Can't beat soda bread, fresh and warm out of the oven. My dad used to make this years ago - your pic brings it all back... Yum!

Elle said...

Kevin, that looks fantastic! neen is right--the typical Irish Soda Bread that we see is dry and gross. I have bad memories of it from when I was a kid. blech.

But yours looks wonderful! I'm going to have to give it a try with some of the white whole what flour. Thanks!

Bellini Valli said...

The perfect accompaniment for your lamb stew Kevin...all you need is a green beer and you'll be set:D

Deborah said...

I think I just may have to plan an Irish meal for Monday, and this will be on the table!

Jessy and her dog Winnie said...

Looks great! I have made Irish soda bread before, its always yummy!

Proud Italian Cook said...

Kevin, My your busy cooking up a storm!! All look so inviting, I want a slice of that bread!

Sylvie said...

I love Soda Bread. The problem I have though is that I'll eat nearly half a loaf just by myself when I make it. It's great with soup, but I also love it with good quality butter and homemade jam. Yum!

Lisa said...

Irish soda bread is one of my favorite quick breads. I've made a few versions in the past. I tend to be a purist when it comes to this bread and so don't add raisins and caraway. I like your addition of oats here. Next time I try my hand at soda bread, I will consult your version. Looks wonderful!

toni said...

Kevin, you are amazing. I don't know when it was that you decided that your cooking was boring, but I can't see a single thing on your blog that doesn't make my mouth water! Butter melting on bread fresh from the oven? Dipping sed bread in the gravy from an Irish stew? Does it get better than that??

katiez said...

I love soda bread and make it once a week, at least. I have to sub yogurt for the buttermilk, though, but it works!
Yours looks lovely!

giz said...

The texture looks bang on and the thought of a warm piece of bread slathered in butter just warms me up.

marye said...

looks great, kevin!

RecipeGirl said...

Looks like this turned out well. I love that you modify your recipes with a little of this and a little of that! The added oats sound like a great idea.

Jaime said...

i had never heard of irish soda bread until now! this looks so easy!

Elle said...

Kevin, I made this last night to go with our corned beef dinner. Fantastic! I had the ingredients out, mixed, and the bread in the oven in no longer than 5 minutes. Great flavor, and not dry like the soda bread you see in the stores. I'm thinking that sunflower seeds would be a nice addition next time--maybe even a little cinnamon and raisin action for nice toast. Delicious, amazingly quick bread to get on the table. Thanks!

shellyfish said...

Horrah for soda bread! And for BBD as well!

Social Science Girl said...

I Just stumbled across your blog and I love it! Made this last night and I can't believe how amazing it was (and easy!) :)

Anonymous said...

Kevin are you married? Would you like to marry me? Ha ha
great blog, you can really cook!

Mary from the west of Ireland

The Roberts' said...

i just tried this recipe, & my bread rose to a height of 1 1/2 inches! do you know why? i like to cook, but this is my first try at bread, maybe baking is not my forte! it does taste very good tho!

Kevin said...

The Roberts': Strange. It is possible that your baking soda is expired. If you add a teaspoon of vinegar to a teaspoon of the baking soda it should fizz vigorously if it is still good.

Stargazer said...

I made this yesterday and I love how easy it was, but my bread didn't seem to rise at all. Yours has a lovely peak in the center just like it should, how come mine doesn't? Is it because I didn't add salt? Then what can be done without the salt to make it rise? I'm allergic to molds and yeast so I love soda bread but can't ever seem to get it to rise.

Anonymous said...

I just made my version of soda bread (pita bread but I had no yeast). I figured it wanted kneading but now I've checked this site and no one mentions kneading. Wonder what will happen. It's rising now.

Christina said...

Perfect idea- we were on the same page! I'm going to see if I can make this for tomorrow's corned beef and cabbage.

Anonymous said...

does anybody know if irish soda bread is good with something like strawberry preserves????

Kevin said...

Still warm from the oven with some melting butter and strawberry preserves would be amazing.

JuneNY said...

My Irish Soda Bread turned out dry, so for this years St. Patricks Day, I turned the stiff dough into muffins. They turned out a bit moister. The currants I added were a big plus, too.

Lotta said...

Hi Kevin,

What a great blog, recipes and photos!

I like your Irish Soda Bread recipe but I have a question about the oats. Do I need to make oatmeal and then add it to the batter?

Thank you!
Lotta

Kevin said...

Lotta: That should have read rolled oat and you just add them uncooked. Enjoy!

Rhiannon said...

If you add currants to this, it will be perfect!

Also... for a GREAT spread, here's a recipe for whiskey butter (credit to Amy Tobin)...

Whiskey Butter:
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 tablespoon Irish whiskey
1 tablespoon orange juice
1 teaspoon orange zest
2 tablespoons confectioners sugar

The most important step that was left out of the recipe was cutting the Cross before baking (to let the devil out).

Kevin said...

Rhiannon: The whiskey butter sounds good!

Anonymous said...

You had me until you added oatmeal to the list of ingredients. True,real Irish soda bread does not have that.

Ella said...

Just made this tonight and exactly how you wrote the recipe - no changes whatsoever. It is simple and yummy. When it was done baking, I cut a slice (okay, I cut two - so what - I was feeling piggy) and slathered on butter, then topped with some sugar free jam. Scrumptious! Kevin, you are the best!

Kevin said...

Ella: Glad you enjoyed it! I can't resist cutting into a freshly made loaf of bread right away either!

Anonymous said...

This was excellent bread; made a loaf las Sunday; going to bake another tonight. Thanks!

Marty

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