This bread is actually good for any night of the week and one that I used to make to go along with a big pot of soup before I got into making more yeasted breads. I like it for a weeknight because it takes less then an hour to make, so I would get the bread in the oven first, then start on getting the pot of soup going next. They would both be hot and ready at about the same time. It’s great plain, dipped in soup, with butter, or alongside a big plate of corned beef and potatoes for St. Patty’s Day!
This recipe is from America’s Test Kitchen and calls for a little bit of cake flour. I highly recommend this, it makes the bread nice and light. Brushing with butter after it comes out of the oven is also a good idea!
Irish Soda Bread
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup cake flour
2 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
3 tablespoons butter, softened and divided
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
Heat the oven to 400 degrees and and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Whisk together the flours, sugar, soda, cream of tartar and salt. Using two knives, a biscuit blender, or your fingers, work 2 tablespoons of the butter into the dry ingredients. The mixture should resemble coarse crumbs.
Stir in the buttermilk with a fork, just until the dough starts to come together. Dump the dough out onto a clean counter and knead briefly – no longer than a minute – until the dough is coarse and bumpy. Do not knead until smooth.
Shape the dough into a round about 6 inches wide by 2 inches thick. Place on the prepared baking sheet and cut a large X in to the top of the loaf (don’t cut all the way through) with a serrated knife.
Bake until golden brown, about 40-45 minutes.
Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool. Melt the remaining butter and brush it all over the top and the sides. Let the loaf cool for about an hour or serve with dinner immediately.
Stop in to Pacific Sourdough Bakery for the more traditional soda bread with currants and caraway seeds on St. Patty’s Day!