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irish soda bread

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This is my second time making Irish soda bread and I was happier with this recipe than the last one I used.


I don’t think DH was too thrilled with the caraway seed which has a very distinct flavor.  I enjoyed it though!

Caraway seeds are often found in rye bread.

Most Irish soda bread recipes call for raisins or currants (mini raisins!).  I’ve also seen golden raisins used.  I decided to use both currants and golden raisins.

Currants are smaller than regular raisins (see picture above) so they spread more evenly throughout the bread.

If you’re like me, and you normally don’t have buttermilk, you can use this easy buttermilk substitution:

Combine 1 cup milk + 1 tablespoon of white vinegar

Let stand about 5 minutes.  You should see little bubbles on top (see picture below)

You can also use lemon juice if you don’t have vinegar.

I don’t buy buttermilk often because I don’t enjoy drinking it.  What am I supposed to do with the leftovers after I’ve used what I needed for the recipe?

The only person I know who does like drinking buttermilk, is my dad.  Now that I think about it, Brittany probably does too, but that I don’t know for sure.  I’m just guessing, since she likes everything-like my dad!

Growing up my dad would try to encourage my siblings and I to taste new food/drinks by giving us money to try it.  This really didn’t happen very often- only a few times.

One of those instances involved a glass of buttermilk.  I remember the deal was we would get a little bit of money for just tasting it (maybe a dollar or less).   BUT, if we could drink the whole glass of buttermilk, we would get five dollars.  Five whole dollars.

I couldn’t get down more than the first sip, but David (my twin brother), he was able to choke down the whole glass.  I was jealous of the money, but it wasn’t worth it to me!

Buttermilk does wonderful things for baked goods–muffins, breads, biscuits, pancakes.  And as far as I’m concerned that is the only reason to buy buttermilk.

This bread tastes soo good toasted with butter and/or jam!

Irish Soda Bread

Adapted from King Arthur

Makes 6 mini loaves or 1 large loaf

2 cups white whole-wheat flour

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon baking soda

3/4 teaspoon salt

½ cup granulated sugar

½ cup currants

½ cup golden raisins

1 tablespoon caraway seeds, optional

1 large egg

1 ¾ cup skim milk*

1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons white vinegar*

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

*If you have buttermilk, substitute it for the milk and leave out the vinegar.

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.  Grease mini loaf pan- 6 mini loaves (or 9″ x 5″ loaf pan).
  2. In a measuring cup or small bowl, combine milk and vinegar—set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, sugar, currants, raisins and caraway seeds.
  4. In a separate bowl, whisk together milk mixture (or buttermilk) and egg
  5. Gently stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients.
  6. Stir in melted butter.
  7. Pour batter into prepared bread pan.
  8. Bake bread for 25-30 minutes (50 minutes – 1 hour if making one large loaf) or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean.
  9. Loosen edges of each loaf and let sit for 5 to 10 minutes.
  10. Carefully turn loaves out onto cooling rack.  OR transfer to cutting board and dig in while it’s still warm!  Store in airtight container at room temperature.

I made spritz cookies to take in to work on St. Patrick’s Day.  I try to bring in baked treats whenever I have to work a holiday.  :)  I’ll post the recipe later.

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