Irene’s Irish Soda Bread
Every year I run this post because so many people want my mother’s Irish Soda Bread recipe. Here it is again, in time for tomorrow’s breakfast in honor of St. Patrick’s Day.
Keep in mind that this bread must be slathered in butter. Not butter substitute, but real, artery-clogging butter. Enjoy!
4 cups flour
3 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 cup seedless raisins (soak in hot water for a few minutes to soften, then drain)
1 Tbs. caraway seeds (optional)
1 1/3 cups buttermilk (more if it feels too dry, my measure is closer to 1 2/3 cups)
1/4 cup Crisco (I’ve experimented with other shortening but came back to this)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Sift flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda into bowl.
Stir in raisins and caraway seeds, if using.
Add buttermilk and Crisco. Mix. Knead just enough to moisten dry ingredients. Shape into two mounds and place on a greased cookie sheet. Cut an X into the top of each loaf. Makes two loaves.
Bake at 350 for 45-50 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. Cut into wedges or slices to serve.
Hint: Do not try “adapting” this recipe to make it healthier or lighter. I have tried bread flour. I have tried whole wheat flour. Nothing comes close to the real deal.
Note: Yes, I realize the Irish Soda Bread diehards would scoff at this with its raisins and all. This is how we do it/did it in my house.