great-grandma's soda bread

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

To celebrate, I baked my great-grandmother's Irish Soda Bread. Her recipe originated in Ireland and has been passed down to my grandmother, then my mother and now me. There's no doubting that soda bread tastes best still warm from the oven and spread with butter. It was even better tonight then I had remembered it to be! So delicious and so easy to make:

3 cups flour
1 1/2 cups of buttermilk
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups of raisins (omit for traditional "plain" soda bread)

Mix all the ingredients together. Knead for a few minutes on floured surface. Place in a cake pan. Make a cross with a knife in dough. Bake for 35 minutes at 350 degrees.

Short history

Soda bread is a quick bread dating back to approximately 1840 in which baking soda is used for leavening rather than yeast. The ingredients of traditional soda bread are flour, baking soda, salt, and buttermilk. Some believe that the cross was placed in the bread to ward off evil and some say the cross is used to help with the rising of the bread.

After some research I found that my great-grandmother's soda bread could actually be named "Spotted Dog" due to it's addition of raisins. Originating in Ireland, the Spotted Dog is a fruit bread made using the same key ingredients as traditional Irish Soda Bread with the addition of sugar and dried fruit. Typically, raisins or currants, which make the bread look "spotted" and thus the name.

However, my great-grandmother's recipe contains no sugar so, maybe it's a cross breed between spotted dog and plain soda bread? Either way it is yummy and the kids agree!


Carla said...

Looks really yummy!!

Softflexgirl said...

Looooook at those faces - so cute!

Creative Stash said...

I thought it would be nice to show the next generation eating their first piece of soda bread! They quite enjoyed it :)