Irish Soda Bread

 I’ve said it before, and I will say it again.  Ireland changed my life.

Irish Soda Bread

On my first night in Dublin my husband and I found a bustling pub in the Temple Bar District which served traditional Irish food.  Now, most pubs sell Guinness stew and soda bread, but this pub had bangers and mash, roasted lamb, potato stew, and Irish smoked salmon.  We simply had to eat there!

Irish Soda Bread 

For starters, because we were STARVING, we had fresh baked soda bread with dill butter and Irish smoked salmon.  It was, in short, divine!  The bread had a unique texture that came from their flour.  They grind their wholemeal flour far less than we do here in the United States.  It is that flour, and the Irish butter, which give the bread its unique flavor and texture.

Irish Soda Bread   

In a perfect world you would all be able to get Irish wholemeal flour  (King Arthur sells a really good one!) and Irish butter for this bread, but I know that is not always possible.  I do recommend, as an investment in delicious flavor, that you buy a sack of the wholemeal flour.  It makes all the difference in the soda bread.  Also, if you use Irish butter it will also change the flavor of the finished bread.  It is SO worth it!

Traditional Irish Soda Bread    Yield one 9″ loaf

2 cups Irish wholemeal flour (or 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour and 2/3 cups whole wheat flour)
1 teaspoon regular salt
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 tablespoon butter, melted (I prefer Kerrygold Irish Butter)
1 1/4 cups buttermilk

Heat the oven to 350 F and spray a 9″ loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray.

Irish Soda Bread 

In a large bowl combine the flour, salt and baking soda.  Whisk until well blended. 

Irish Soda Bread 

In another bowl combine the buttermilk and melted butter.  Mix well.

Irish Soda Bread   Irish Soda Bread

Create a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour the buttermilk mixture into the center of the well.   Stir gently until the flour is just moist.

Irish Soda BreadIrish Soda Bread 

Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the loaf is firm and hollow sounding when tapped.  Allow to rest ten minutes in the pan before turning out of the pan to cool on a wire rack.

 Irish Soda Bread 

Serve warm, with Irish butter.

Irish Soda Bread

© 2009, Evil Shenanigans. All rights reserved.

Author: Kelly

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  • Oh my gosh I need to find that flour! I think that is why all my attempts at this bread have been failing. Although being from an Irish-American house we always had the American “sweet” version of soda bread – this is the true original.

    Isn’t Ireland amazing? I have a very detailed post coming soon about my 2 week trip there last fall. What pubdid you go to in Temple Bar?

    Great post!

  • Looks beautiful! I love Irish soda breads and yours looks absolutely fantastic! I need to get some of that flour!

  • I love Irish soda bread. My mom & her family are from Ireland, so every gathering we have involves soda bread. Sadly, my mom doesn’t know how to make it! Maybe I’ll try this recipe out on her and throw in some raisins (as that’s the way we often have it). Thanks!

  • I’ve never really tried soda bread before. I’ve seen it, though. I would definitely love to try it. I can imagine the smell of it from freshly baked. Mmmm…looks really good.

  • That looks so good, I have always wanted to make this, but haven’t yet. I am definitely going to try it now, thanks for sharing!

  • O.M.G. That looks divine! Especially with the melty butter on it!!

  • omg, I love soda bread!!!

  • This bread looks great, and the back story is so lovely. Now I want to order some wholemeal flour and a slab of Irish butter! I just may 😉

  • Oh that looks great!! I remember having Irish butter… so yummy!

  • beautiful Irish soda bread, you baked it to perfection too that bread looks so tender and soft

  • Irish Soda Bread looks delicious!

  • I have never tried to bake soda bread but now I don’t have any excuse anymore!

  • Every time I’ve tried Irish Soda Bread, it’s been this dense tasteless slice that made me realize why my ancestors left the island. I bet the American flour is the problem. Thanks for the eye-opener!

    I’ll keep an eye out for wholemeal flour and give it a go.

  • The flour used makes all the difference in the world to how this bread tastes. I make mine with Abbey Stoneground flour which is fabulous but, unfortunately, I don’t think you can get it outside of Ireland. And the bread simply has to be slathered in Kerrygold once it comes out of the oven – just divine!

  • Oooh that bread looks amazing!!!

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