since i never made Irish soda bread before, i practiced the day before with Happy Herbivore‘s eggless recipe. a fellow momma and seasoned baker recommended I look at James Beard Foundation‘s eggless recipe as well. it is slightly easier since we can use all purpose flour instead of cake flour. so little one and i gave it a go.
JBF’s recipe is a more traditional Irish soda bread with very little sugar and no raisins. little one loves raisins so I thought we’d make the Americanized version and add more sugar instead of salt and add raisins. little one enjoyed adding the raisins! since today, St. Patrick’s Day, I thought I’d add a little fun. with leftover free Color Kitchen Foods green food coloring, we added it to the dry mixture. when we added the buttermilk, our batter was a nice bright green. then after cutting the X on top, little one and I shaped each corners into an exaggerated heart shape. if we’re lucky, it’ll come out as a four-leaf clover!
- 4 cups King Arthur’s Flour all purpose gluten free white flour
- 2 Tbsp sugar
- a pinch of salt
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon baking powder
- 3-4 packages dry green food coloring, optional
- 1 ½ to 2 cups buttermilk
- butter for the baking pan, softened
preheat oven to 375ºF.
combine the flour, sugar, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. if you want to make it green, add the dry food coloring to the dry mixture. next, add buttermilk a little at a time until you have a soft dough (similar to a biscuit dough).
knead the dough on a lightly floured surface for 2 or 3 minutes, until it is quite smooth and velvety-looking. form it into a round cake. place it in a well-buttered cookie sheet.
cut a large cross on the top of the loaf with a very sharp floured knife. to shape into a 4-leaf clover, push the middle edge of each quarter toward the center of the dough to form 4 exaggerated heart shape.
place it into the oven and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until it has turned a nice brown and sounds hollow when you tap it with your knuckles.
let the loaf cool completely before cutting it into paper-thin slices; soda bread must never be cut thickly.