Super Simple Soda Bread

There is something about a freshly baked loaf, that makes breakfast just perfect.  However not all of us, I realise, have the time to get up at the crack of dawn to mix, knead and prove a loaf.

I have tried overnight loaves, but personally have never made a version that I have enjoyed or that has worked particularly well for me. Therefore we usually bake late at night if a fresh loaf is required for the next morning or for a super fresh loaf we make soda bread.

Soda bread is a great to make if you have never made bread before or if you want to start young children off baking. In my grandmother's recipe book it was described as 'emergency loaf' but it is so much more than that, it is delicious, like a cross between a scone and bread. It's as equally perfect with salty savoury bacon or sweet homemade jam.  It is also a great choice if you have run out of yeast, or you are out of strong flour or if you have live yoghurt or buttermilk to use up. Best of all is it requires little kneading no proving and is really straightforward and quick to cook.

Super Simple Soda Bread
(Makes one loaf)

You will need:

250g Plain Flour
1tsp Salt
1tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
2tsp Sugar
225ml Buttermilk or Live Yoghurt
Oil for greasing baking tray

How to make it:

  • Turn on oven to Gas Mark 8 / 230 Centigrade
  • Sift bicarbonate of soda, salt and flour into mixing bowl add the sugar
  • Stir in the buttermilk or yoghurt and stir with wooden spoon then bring together with your hands until you have a soft doughy mass.  If it is too sticky add a little more flour.
  • Knead dough for about half a minute until smooth, form into a ball and place on a greased baking tray slash a deep cross in the top to allow bread to open up during the cooking.
  • Bake in preheated overn for 12 minutes, turn down to Gas Mark 6 / 200 Centigrade and cook for 15 - 20 minutes more until the bread sounds hollow when tapped underneath.
  • Leave to cool for 15 minutes before eating soda bread tastes best eaten warm. Once cooled it makes great toast.