Recipe: Grandma’s Irish Soda Bread, from SallysBakingAddiction.com
The chef writes: “Irish Soda Bread is a quick bread that does not require any yeast. Instead, all of its leavening comes from baking soda and buttermilk. This Irish soda bread recipe is my grandmother’s and has been cherished in my family for years … [my grandmother] would be in her 90s today. St. Patrick’s Day is her birthday.”
- 1 and 3/4 cups (420ml) buttermilk
- 1 large egg
- 4 and 1/4 cups (515g) all-purpose flour (plus more for your hands and counter)
- 3 Tablespoons (38g) granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 5 Tablespoons (70g) unsalted butter, cold and cubed
- optional: 1 cup (150g) raisins
- Preheat oven to 400°F (204°C). There are options for the baking pan: line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat, use a seasoned 10-12 inch cast iron skillet, or grease a 9-10 inch cake pan or pie dish. Set aside.
- Whisk the buttermilk and egg together. Set aside. Whisk the flour, granulated sugar, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl. Cut in the butter using a pastry cutter, a fork, or your fingers. Work the dough until into coarse crumbs, then stir in the raisins, if using. Pour in the buttermilk/egg mixture. Gently fold the dough together until it is too stiff to stir. With floured hands on a lightly floured surface, work the dough into an (approximately) 8 or 9 inch round loaf as best you can. Knead the dough for about 30 seconds or until all the flour is moistened. If the dough is too sticky, add a little more flour.
- Transfer the dough to the prepared skillet/pan. Using a very sharp knife, score an X into the top. Bake until the bread is golden brown and center appears cooked through, about 45 minutes. Loosely cover the bread with aluminum foil if you notice heavy browning on top. I usually place foil on top halfway through bake time.
- Remove from the oven and allow bread to cool for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack. Serve warm, at room temperature, or toasted with desired toppings/spreads.
- Cover and store bread at room temperature for 2 days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
St. Patrick’s festivities to check out
- Paddy Hough Parade: Tuesday March 17, 12-1:30pm; Main Street, Vancouver, WA
- This annual parade through uptown village honoring the Hough neighborhood’s namesake features students from local elementary and preschools, car clubs, local dignitaries, and many local community members and organizations. More info here.
- Vancouver Firefighters Pipes & Drums Pub Crawl: Saturday March 14, 2-10pm, and Tuesday March 17, 12-10pm; assorted venues around Vancouver, Ridgefield, and Battle Ground
- Founded in 2009 to promote brotherhood among firefighters in and around our city, this not-to-be-missed crew will tour through several spots in Ridgefield/Battle Ground on the 14th, and will make the rounds in Vancouver on the 17th. More info here.
- Portland’s Annual St. Patrick’s Day Celebration: Tuesday March 17, 3-8pm; Aquinas Hall, Portland, OR
- The Oregon Irish Society invites you to join them for their annual St. Patrick’s Day fair. Continuous entertainment from start to finish: authentic Irish music, song, and dance; face painting; Penny’s Puppet Show for children; and food and beverages available for purchase. Adults $12, youth $4. More info here.