Irish soda bread might possibly be one of the easiest breads to make.
In about 40 minutes, you’ll be digging into a warm, fragrant hunk of bread.
Unlike most breads, soda bread relies on a reaction of an acid (buttermilk) and a base (baking soda) to help the dough rise, rather than waiting hours for added yeast to leaven the dough.
In fact, Irish soda bread doesn’t need any rise time at all — mix all the ingredients in a bowl, shape the dough into a loose ball… and just like that, you’re basically done.
A quick trip to the oven develops a golden-brown crust on the outside.
Scoring bread dough (cutting a slash or two into the top with a sharp knife) before baking helps to control the direction the bread will rise as it bakes, and prevents it from baking into an awkward shape.
Leftover slices can be wrapped individually and stored in the freezer.
Irish Soda Bread
- Parchment paper
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- 1½ cup whole wheat flour
- ¾ tsp. baking soda
- ¾ tsp. sea salt (or Himalayan salt)
- ¾ cup reduced-fat (2%) buttermilk
- ¼ cup raisins (optional)
Preheat oven to 450° F.
Line large baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
Combine all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl; mix well. Form a well in the middle.
Add buttermilk and raisins (if desired); mix until just blended.
Knead dough 4 to 5 times; add additional flour if dough is too wet. Shape into an 8-inch round loaf.
Place on prepared baking sheet. Cut a ¼-inch deep x in the top.
Bake for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 400º F. Do not open oven door. Bake for an additional 15 minutes, or until bread sounds hollow when tapped.
Cool bread for 5 minutes and transfer to wire rack; cool completely.
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