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Mar 22 / Jane

Irish Soda Bread

This St. Patrick’s Day I hosted friends for dinner. I made the traditional corn beef, cabbage and potatoes. I meant to serve it with this amazing Dijon Mustard I purchased at Trader Joe’s, but I completely forgot and only realized its absence the next morning when I saw the mustard in the fridge. Oops. I did however serve dinner with Irish Soda Bread, and instead of serving store bought bread, I decided to make it myself! I found a dozen recipes online and picked one I thought was closest to my favorite store bought brand: Katie Reilly’s (sold ready-made at Shop Rites in the area, but you can also buy the mix online here). Or you could just use mine:

3 c Flour, sifted
3 t Baking Powder
1/4 t Salt
1/2 c Sugar
1 c Raisins
1 Egg
1 1/4 c Milk
2 t Unsalted Butter, softened

1. Preheat oven to 375* (350* for glass dish).
2. Mix (by hand) all dry ingredients together in one bowl.
3. Mix egg and milk in another bowl.
4. Mix wet and dry together, then add butter.
5. Pour into a greased 8″ baking dish, sprinkle sugar on top.
6. Bake 40 – 60 minutes, until the top is golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean.

I used King Aruthor Whole Wheat Flour and sifting it was lots of fun since I don’t actually have a sifter, just one of those little handheld strainer thingys- but I did notice the final product before baking was significantly smoother. I’m sure the whole wheat flour gave the bread the hearty taste and texture I was looking for. I also used organic raw sugar in and on top of the bread which makes a difference over processed granulated sugar. Overall, all my ingredients were organic except the Baking Soda, which cannot be organic as far as I know, and the “natural sea salt” I used. Here’s a picture of my finished product:

The first time I baked this, it was perfect after 42min, the second time I didn’t allow the butter to soften properly and baked it for 47min. I have an electric oven so it’s quite imprecise. Both breads came out pretty amazing and not dissimilar. Enjoy!

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