Irish Soda Bread


Hand written by my mom Tina Needham for me.

Irish Soda Bread is a traditional bread of Ireland. It started being made in the 1840’s when Baking Soda aka Bicarbonate of soda was first introduced to the country.  The first documented use of soda (pearl ash) to leaven bread was by the Indigenous People of the America’s.

It was made with only the basic of ingredients, flour, buttermilk, salt, soda. Ireland was a poor country and they only had very basic ingredients.

Today this basic quick bread recipe that I use includes caraway, baking powder, raisins or craisins (my good friend Chris suggested this twist).img083

A few pointers:  Don’t over mix the dough it will get tough

You want the dough moist but not too wet. Depending on the amount of flour you may not need two full cups of buttermilk.

When I divide the dough in half I use a scale to weigh it. (I got a scale when I started baking using  metric measurements from recipe’s I was making from the PBS series The Great British Baking show.)

You may need to bake longer than 30 – 35 min.  I add extra time in 5 min increments. IMG_3865

Disclaimer: I work for Wegmans in one of their Maryland stores. Hence you will see that I use a lot of their Brand Name products when I bake. Other than my normal wage they do not pay me for using their products in this blog.  I just like them.


Once the loaves are done I let them cool.  This bread has a hard crust but inside is soft and has a bit tangy taste. These loves are made with craisins. It is very perishable so I cut it into slices and freeze it (not something the Irish did back in the day). This way I can pull out a piece any time.IMG_3877

Love it with Irish Butter or any kind of butter for that matter. Enjoy!

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