P & Q: Irish Soda Bread

You saving this for the 17th?  It looks so simple.  But that’s where I usually mess up.  What do you want to know or want us to know?


91 thoughts on “P & Q: Irish Soda Bread

  1. The irish soda bread that I’ve made before is scone-like. I’m sure dried currants would work but they probably aren’t readily available. I bet dried cranberries/craisins would taste good too.

  2. I was thinking of either raisins with lemon zest or dried cranberries with orange zest. I will probably add just a bit of sugar to counteract the tartness from the zest.

  3. So excited to host! I’m hoping to make my bread this weekend so I can prepare my post. I’ll probably make it again next weekend, but my parents will be up and I won’t have time to set up and take pics.

    Since I’m hosting, feel free to contact me with any questions! If you need a quick response, twitter (@chocolatemoosey) and email (chocolatemooseyblog at gmail dot com) work best since I get those on my phone.

    • I loved this recipe too! I found that the bread will last longer than a few hours as noted at the bottom of the recipe – all one has to do is wrap the bread in a damp paper towel and place in ziplock bag. A little of the crustiness is gone but the bread is still as good! :) Kristine

  4. would like to ask how long will this store. The recipe says that by the end of the day it will be hard as a blarney stone. Does that mean that it only lasts a day? Can it be eaten the next?

  5. I made mine with dried currents soaked in rum for a few hours, and used half whole wheat flour in the batter. Not sure if the extra moisture in the fruit or the wheat flour made the difference, but it is still in great shape 3 days later.

  6. My best friend had one at work last year that had fresh blueberries in it. Totally non-traditional, but she loved it.

    I’m contemplating trying the blueberries, or adding raisins.
    Maybe I’ll do two,with one add in each since it’s such a simple recipe!

  7. This morning it was my best occasion to bake the Irish Soda Bread (never heard of it before) and I was so pleased I did it!

    Rewind: Two months ago I had the wish and idea to organise a regular “friends-get-together” and that’s how our weekly “International TGIF morning coffee” started.
    We, desperate housewives and mothers, are from different parts of Switzerland, England, Argentina and this morning we have welcomed a new friend from Hungary (I was able to serve some Rugelach as well, which I had frozen- and she smiled when she heard the word Lekvar – which means JAM in Hungarian) – See, with Baking with Julia not only we learn new recipes, but we are also becoming multilingual!

    Forward: So this morning I made and served the Irish Soda Bread with butter and jam and everybody loved it!
    It’s really easy to make and best thing: no fat or sugar added! Wow!
    I’ll start baking it regularly for breakfast, but to make it more healthy I’ll change the 100% all-purpose-flour with 50% all purpose-flour and 50% wholemeal flour!

    Looking forward to reading your blogs on the 20th!

    – I’ve substituted the buttermilk with 2/3 cups natural yogurt and 1/3 cup milk as written in the book on page 6 and it perfectly worked.
    – I’ve added dried cranberries to the dough.
    – I did not knead it by hand but with a Stand Mixer (sort of Kitchenaid)
    – While preheating the oven and during the baking, I’ve add a heat-resistant cup with water – its steam helps the dough rise better.

    Enjoy it!

  8. I already have two inauthentic Soda Bread recipes that we love (one has green onions and cheddar cheese, the other has oats), so I’m going to resist adding anything to this one and make it just like the recipe says :) Can’t wait to try it!

  9. Here’s a link to the youtube video of Julia baking the soda bread: http://youtu.be/RUnkKA2xzZQ
    (I love it when I can watch the video first; gives you an idea what it’s supposed to look like)

    Strange though– in the video they say they cooled it, wrapped it, and ate it the next day, whereas the book says to eat the same day. Maybe 8 hours is fine, but a full 24 is not?

    Anyway, I love the idea of rum-soaked fruit!! mm!

    • Thanks so much for the link to the video. I agree Bev, I would want to sit in Marion C.’s kitchen and watch her bake all day (Julia’s too). I am wondering, along with others in this group, if this bread will keep over night as indicated in the video. Any comments?

    • Great link! Amazing what technology can teach us! Now I want to make it again and cut it how they did in slices. I cut mine like a cake, but I bet sliced would make delicious toast!

      • Thanks. I’ll do a soda bread redux today. Perhaps it had something to do with the molasses-soaked raisins I included (seemed like a good idea at the time). I’m going strictly by the book this time.

    • I have this red measuring spoon cluster & I am notorious for grabbing up the wrong spoon to measure with! oops & double oops!!

      • Thanks for the moral support. FYI: the second loaf turned out fine. no raisins, but definitely butter and jam-worthy. (I had to trash the first one completely. Good thing it didn’t take long to make!)

  10. I made the Irish Soda Bread yesterday and we had it with our Corned Beef and Cabbage. The bread turned out great. I will definitely keep this recipe in my rotation. I’m looking forward to trying this bread with various additions, especially various cheeses. Definitely a great alternative when you don’t have the time (or did not plan ahead) to wait for yeast dough to rise.

    The bread also did not get super hard by the end of the day. I wrapped it tightly and we had some for toast the next day. I spread it with some leftover apricot levkar.

  11. I baked mine yesterday afternoon w dried cherries since I failed to realize I didn’t have any raisins lol I cut mine into slices last night for pictures and later put in a freezer bag (around 7-8 pm). This morning the slices are still moist. I know the crust was crunchy, so perhaps if you didn’t take any precautions, it would be hard as a rock to cut?

    Love the ideas w all the mix ins, including cheddar and onion!

  12. Very tasty. Made it last week, and it lasted two days! Going to make it again this week, as I love it for breakfast and it is really easy (plus, I want to use up the remaining buttermilk). Added a cup of plump raisins, and I would have eaten the whole loaf, but I got full pretty fast. :)

  13. Would someone with the recipe handy be willing to send me a list of the ingredients in email? Dolores dot ferrero at gmail dot com.

    I forgot to grab the list on my way out the door this morning, and at $4.40/gallon, I’m making “extra” grocery store trips at an absolute minimum…

    Thanks much!

  14. According to my mother, success is all in the kneading for this bread. I think we’re going to do a side-by-side with the recipe my mother usually makes. I can’t ever bring myself to add anything to soda bread – just love the way it is, naturally. I like the idea of spreading leftover lekvar on it.

  15. I made the bread on Saturday and after one day in the freezer and two days on the counter in a Ziploc bag the bread still makes delicious toast! Crunchy on the outside, soft and chewy on the inside. :)

  16. I always use currants. think they are more traditional, but I have no reason to think this, other than that I think it. The grocer up the street has really, really good Irish soda bread, but I am going to make my own this year, of course.

  17. My schedule is so off with starting school again I thought Irish Soda Bread was “due” today, so I made the bread yesterday afternoon and was flying through my blog post and…yeah. Next Tuesday! =)

  18. Tip: I made my “X” cuts too deep and it looks like craters now while it is baking in the oven. I thought on the video they had made pretty deep cuts!!! I’ll still eat it. :)

  19. Help!
    I’ve become a Irish Soda Bread-aholic!
    I’m baking it every second day!
    Tried once with chocolate chips and raisins and natural vanilla extract: yummi!

    The funniest thing: if it wasn’t for the group I think I’d never tried this recipe. Among the many delicious recipes in the book, this one looked so “insignificant”. How wrong I was!!!!

  20. I make Irish Soda Bread every St. Patricks Day. I have a favorite recipe I’ve been making for years and I wasn’t sure I wanted to tempt fate. However, I made two loaves of Julia’s. One plain (just as written) and, the other I added raisins and ¾ cup sugar. I love a sweet soda bread for breakfast. Both came out wonderful!

  21. I forgot which tuesday we can post on our blogs. Is it time yet? I made the Irish soda bread this morning. I soaked the currents in Maker’s Mark for about a day and then drained them. The dough seemed really wet to me. I don’t think I did anything that resembled legitimate kneading. Its looking good and smelling good in the oven though. I’ll post pictures if this past Tuesday was the day. Mary in a2

  22. I’m going to make this tomorrow for a St. Patty’s Day party. I think I’ll make one just like the book and another with some kind of fruit. I like the idea of the cranberry and orange zest so I might try that. Looking forward to it. I love simple, so hopefully it turns out right!

  23. I’m making mine tonight! Thanks to others who have made it already and checked in, I know it stays good for a couple of days and is not blarney-like. If I make it tonight, we can have it for breakfast on St. Paddy’s Day with my strawberry freezer jam, then have it later that night with dinner. I’m trying to decide if I should make it exactly as it says in the book, or with whole wheat flour instead. My book just arrived yesterday (finally!) but I bought the ingredients for the bread last weekend in preparation, including a bag of whole wheat flour because I was under the impression it used whole wheat (which is apparently how soda bread is traditionally usually made). What do you all think, which would you do make? Thinking I may do the white flour version tonight so I can follow the book exactly, then try it with wheat some other time soon.

    • I followed the recipe exactly as written (as I did with other recipes we have done). Mainly because my skills are not that advanced. Still once I kept to recipe and found my mistakes, I plan to improvise the next time around. This recipe is a ‘next time arounder.’ ! Kristine

  24. Mine is baking in the oven right now. We’re not Irish but I thought it would be perfect with vegetable beef soup on St. Patty’s day! This is such a super, simple recipe I know I’ll make it again. I made mine plain but I think I’ll try some additions next time.

  25. I made it last night, and found that the leftovers, sliced and sealed in a plastic bag (may as well mistreat them the way I’d do any bread!) were still moist and tasty on their own, slathered with butter. Will definitely make this again!

  26. Sounds like I’m in the minority here, but I just wasn’t feeling the love for Irish Soda Bread. Mine came out very sponge-y and bland. Maybe my technique was off?

  27. Did anyone else have very sticky, pancake-like batter? I followed directions exactly, except I made my own buttermilk by adding 2 teaspoons of lemon juice to the milk. I ended up adding an extra cup and a half of flour! It rose beautifully and turned out great, though!

  28. I finally made mine today…no additives, just plain and my lunch guests ate nearly the whole thing! (and I helped), then I had some later as a bedtime snack…with butter and some of my left over apricot lekvar. What a lovely, simple bread. I’m definitely going to try it with half bran flour or whole wheat flour and possibly a little sugar, some nuts and currants or raisins, It makes awesome toast. Can’t wait to see everyone’s results on Tuesday.

  29. Mine was like thick pancake batter, even after an extra cup of flour! Humidity maybe? Turned out pretty nice, though

  30. To all:

    So sorry for my early post. I used the scheduler this time around and apparently clicked on the wrong date. It has been removed and hopefully posts correctly tomorrow. Thanks so much for letting me know Mireia!!

    Your co-host,


  31. I’m relieved to be reading some comments that this recipe produces a bread with a longer shelf life than the blurb indicates. I’d been feeling reluctant to make it (plus have been time-pressed the past couple of weeks), but I’ll try to get this done in the next day or two.

  32. I am posting a link to an Authentic Irish Soda Bread recipe that I got from the Irish Bed and Breakfast at an Irish working farm called the Causey Farm Experience outside Dublin we stayed at 6 years ago.

    About 6 years ago, my entire family and some friends went to Ireland on vacation. When we were looking through our guidebooks for things to do with children in Ireland, I found a book called, “Take your kids Ireland” that listed the Causey Farm Experience as an Irish working farm that you could stay at in caravans. I booked our group into the caravans with a little trepidation, (since there wasn’t a website back then and none of us were really sure what a caravan was)! (It turns out it looked a lot like the old Gypsy caravans that you see in movies!)

    The Causey Farm Experience is outside of Dublin and it had to be one of the highlights of our trip. We got to learn Irish drumming, jump in a bog, learn about peat farming and stoves, see all of the farm animals (including sheep, cows, donkeys, geese, horses, kittens and puppies). The Murtaugh family were our hosts and made us feel welcome. We learned how to make scones and Irish soda bread in Lily’s kitchen. She makes hundreds of scones for all the tour groups that come through and it was very fun to help her in her lovely Irish kitchen.

    If you ever go to Ireland, check out their farm! It was amazing! There are two recipes listed on the website, one for brown and one for white soda bread. (The link also has a recipe for her scones!) Yum! Thanks Lily!


    Thanks to the Murtaugh family (our hosts) and especially Lilly for sharing with us! Enjoy

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