Monday, March 14, 2011

Irish Soda Bread

If you've never tried soda bread, you don't know what you're missing. I've tried oodles of different recipes, but this is the one I've stuck with because it's tender, tasty and moist.  Its really hard to find dried currents in the United States, so I substitute raisins, or craisins.  I think the yellow raisins give the bread an added touch of sweetness. Be careful not to over-bake, as the bread will be dry.

4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup corn oil
2 teaspoons caraway seed (optional)
1 cup currents, raisins or craisins (optional, but yummy)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly spray a 9 inch round cake pan.  Combine all dry ingredients in a large bowl.  In a separate bowl, beat eggs, buttermilk, and oil together.  Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients.  Pour the buttermilk mixture in the well.  Add the caraway seeds, and the currents.  Stir until a soft dough forms.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured board (flour hands for easier handling of dough, but be careful not to use too much flour or the bread will be dry).  Shape into a large round ball, and remove to the baking pan.  Cut a large X on the top, using a sharp knife.

Bake until golden brown, 30 - 40 minutes.  Cut into wedges. Serve while still warm, with butter and sweet marmalade.

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