Tuesday, May 20, 2014

IRISH SODA BREAD

As I mentioned yesterday, Friend Sandi's husband Carey asked me several months ago if I had a recipe for Irish Soda Bread, a favorite of his.  He said the problem was he could only find it in the stores around St. Patrick's Day.  I didn't have a recipe, but I told him I was sure I could find one.  I actually found several and even one online.

Friday night we were going to go to Carey and Sandi's to play cards so I decided I would surprise him with a loaf of Irish Soda Bread. It wasn't quite as easy as I expected because I couldn't find any of the recipes I had found earlier (I forgot to mark them).  Fortunately I had repinned the recipe I had seen on Pinterest, but I still looked in a couple cookbooks had purchased at estate sales the last two Fridays.  I found one but it was quite different from the one from mess for less.  Since I had never made it before I really didn't know which one to go with, but decided to try mess for less. (I was won over by pictures of Vicky's darling daughters mixing and kneading the bread.) 

My husband and I were the first ones to get to Carey and Sandi's Friday night so I hurried in and showed him the bread.  I told him he could try it and if it didn't taste good, he could throw it out before anybody else got there.  He assured me it would be fine.  

He cut one piece off and then preceded to cut another slice.  He looked at me and said he didn't like the crust. Then he spread some butter on the second slice and pronounced it "GOOD".  My husband picked up the first piece and said he liked the crust and ate it.  Carey finally cut Sandi and me pieces and we agreed it was very good. Carey said it was really good for breakfast.  I think it would be.

Remember if you want to print the recipe using the print friendly button at the bottom of the post, it will allow you to remove the images (to save ink).




IRISH SODA BREAD

4     cups flour (I used 2 cups white whole wheat flour and 2 cups all-purpose flour)
1     teaspoon baking soda
1     tablespoon baking powder
1/3  cup sugar (I used stevia) + 1/2 tablespoon sugar
1/2  teaspoon salt
1/2  cup (1 stick) softened butter (I use a 60% vegetable oil spread stick.)
1     cup buttermilk
1     egg
1/2  cup raisins
1/4  cup melted butter for brushing on top (2 tablespoons is plenty)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease baking sheet.


Combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, sugar, salt.


melt butter in the microwave.


Add the melted butter to the dry ingredients.





Beat the egg in the buttermilk.


Add to the flour mixture.


Stir til dough starts to form.


Add the raisins.


I always end up using my fingers.


Work in with fingers.


When most of the flour has been worked in, dump dough onto a floured surface.  Don't worry if some of the flour hasn't been worked in, you can use it when dough becomes sticky as you knead it.


Don't be afraid of "kneading".  It is a simple process of bring on side over to the center.


Then rotate the dough a quarter turn and then bring the top side down to the center. 
Keep rotating quarter turns and then bringing the top side down to the center until the dough is "smooth". Be prepared to spread a little more flour if necessary to keep the dough from sticking to the surface....I didn't have to though with this recipe. (I didn't notice the time when I started kneading, but the process was less than 5 minutes.)


Brush the top with the additional melted butter.  (I didn't have a brush so I just covered the top using a spoon.)


Sprinkle the top with the additional sugar.


Using a sharp knife cut an X in the top.

I probably cut an inch deep.


Place loaf on baking sheet 


and bake one hour or til done. Check doneness by inserting a toothpick in the center.  It will come out clean when done.  (I also tapped on the top and it sounded hollow....that's what you do when you make other bread.)

Slice to serve.  Carey says it tastes best with butter spread on the slice.  (It was good either way.)



After the others arrived, Carey cut more slices and shared it with others They all raved about it also.










I can't thank Carey enough for asking me to make him some.  If he hadn't, I might never had tried it and discovered what a fantastic bread Irish Soda Bread is.

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