For the love of the Irish! Even though I never met my three long-gone Irish great-great-grandmothers, I like to imagine them making soda bread.
This year I am really into making bread. For this St Patrick’s Day, I made Irish soda bread.
Instead of the traditional method which uses only baking soda and buttermilk as leavening, I added yeast. Buttermilk adds acid which reacts with the soda to rise the bread. Some bakers add an egg also, to give it additional rise. This recipe adds a little sugar because the bread is studded with raisins, which makes it more of a tea-time rather than a breakfast loaf.
This recipe makes two loaves.
½ cup warm water (105-110 o F)
1 package instant yeast
6 cups of bread flour or half bread flour, half all-purpose flour
3 tbs plus 1 tsp sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1 ½ tsp kosher salt
4 oz cold butter cut into cubes
1 ½ cups warm buttermilk
1 ½ cup raisins
Heat the water to the required temperature, testing with a thermometer, or put a finger in and if it is a little warmer than your body temperature, it’s probably fine. Too low and the