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Real Irish Soda Bread

by Caren McSherry
This type of bread does not use yeast as the leavening agent. The chemical reaction of buttermilk and baking soda provides the rising. It is important to have the oven preheated and to hold yourself back from opening the door during the baking process.

Classic Soda bread uses only flour, soda, salt and buttermilk. You will find other recipes that include an egg whisked into the buttermilk and some include butter rubbed into the dry ingredients before adding the buttermilk. This is a classic, but which ever version you try, it will be rewarding.


      • 4 cups unbleached flour (you can use 1/2 whole wheat & 1/2 white)
      • 1 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
      • 1 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
      • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
      • 1 Tablespoon oats for the top of the bread


1. Preheat the over to 425F
2. Sift the flour, baking soda and salt together, place in a large bowl, make a well in the middle and pour in the buttermilk. Using your hands incorporate the flour with the buttermilk and knead into a soft dough.
3. Form into a ball and place on a parchment lined cookie sheet.
4. Using a sharp knife or razor cut a cross on top of the bread.
5. Lightly brush with some buttermilk and sprinkle the oats over top.
6. Place in the preheated oven for 45 minutes or until the bread rises and is golden brown.
7. Makes 1 loaf

Irish folklore says the by marking the cross on the top of the bread considered a blessing.

Copyright © 2018 Caren McSherry

Filed Under: bread, Irish, baking,

Real Irish Soda Bread

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