Thursday, March 17, 2011

Irish Soda Bread

"Laughter is brightest where food is best." - Irish Proverb

I couldn't let this day go by without a tip of the hat to the Irish! After all, my mother's side of the family does have it's roots in the Emerald Isle.

I adore Irish Soda Bread and woke up this morning craving it. I also realized I haven't made it in years either. So I got to thinking about what recipe I used and after 30 seconds it came to me!
Grandma Clark's Soda Bread from the New Basics Cookbook- it's more of a cake than a bread really because there is no yeast, but what makes it special is that you bake it in a cast iron skillet- much like grandma would have done!


4 tbsp unsalted butter

3 c unbleached all-purpose flour

1 1/2 tsp salt

1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 c granulated sugar

1 1/2 c dried currants
1 3/4 c buttermilk

2 eggs; well beaten
2 tbsp of butter melted and cooled to room temperature

1 tbsp caraway seeds; (optional)

Method: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

1. Smear 2T of the butter evenly in a 10 inch cast iron skillet. Line the bottom of the skillet with a circle of waxed paper.

2. Sift the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Add currants and toss well to coat.

3. In another bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, eggs, and melted butter. Add this to the dry ingredients, along with the caraway seeds and mix till blended, but do NOT over-mix.

4. Spoon batter into the prepared skillet or cake pan and smooth top gently with a spatula. Dot the top with remaining 2T butter.

5. Place skillet in oven and bake until puffed and golden brown, about 1 hour. Cool for 10 minutes in the skillet, either serve warm or continue to cool on a wire rack.

Now that is comfort in a skillet!

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