One of my daughter’s friends recently asked me for a recipe for Soda Bread and it reminded me that it I been a long time since I’d made it myself. It’s a very simple, rustic bread. No yeast. No proofing. No rising. Very little kneading. Easy to pull together. I think I got this recipe years ago from a newspaper article on traditional St. Patrick’s day dishes and I tweeked it a bit. I love adding citrus zest, preferably orange but even grapefruit zest brightens it up. It tastes best warm from the oven but then most breads do.
4 cups AP flour
4 T granulated sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1 T baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup cold butter cubed
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
1 tsp citrus zest (I used orange)
Preheat the oven to 375. Whisk together dry ingredients. Cube the butter. In an electric mixer with a paddle attachment add the butter to the dry ingredients and mix on low speed until the butter is mixed in.
Whisk together the buttermilk, egg, and zest. With the mixer running on low add the buttermilk egg mixture and beat until incorporated. The dough will be moist and a little sticky. Remove the dough to a lightly floured surface and knead a few times sprinkling with a little additional flour if necessary. Shape into a round loaf and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment.
1/4 cup melted butter
1/4 cup buttermilk
Generously brush the loaf with the butter-buttermilk mixture. I also brush the mixture on a couple additional times during the baking process. Bake for 45-55 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cool on a wire rack. Slice and enjoy! Great with a little drizzle of honey or homemade preserves.