Ballymaloe White Soda Bread

Recipe courtesy Rachel Allen
TOTAL TIME: 2 hr 5 min
Prep: 20 min
Inactive Prep: 1 hr
Cook: 45 min
YIELD: 1 loaf
LEVEL: Easy

ingredients

  • 1 pound all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon caster sugar (superfine)
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda ( baking soda)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 12 to 15 ounces (1 1/2 cups to 2 cups) buttermilk or sour milk
    • recipe tools
      • COMMENT ON THIS PROJECT

            

        Sign in

        All fields are required.

        E-mail Address:

        Password:

        Remember me on this computer

        Signing in

        Please enter your email address and we will send your password

        E-mail Address

        Your password has been sent and should arrive in your mailbox very soon.

        Not a member?

        Sign up for My Cooking Channel to share photos, show off your style, and connect to an enthusiastic and helpful community.

        It's free and easy.

      • Print Recipe

      Directions

      Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

      Sift the flour, sugar, bicarbonate of soda, and salt into a large bowl, and make a well in the center. Pour in most of the buttermilk, leaving about 2 ounces in the measuring cup. Using one hand with your fingers outstretched like a claw, bring the flour and liquid together, adding more buttermilk, if necessary. Do not knead the mixture or it will become heavy. The dough should be soft, but not too wet and sticky.

      When the dough comes together, turn it out onto a floured work surface, and bring it together a little more. Pat the dough into a round, about 1 1/2-inches deep, and cut a deep cross in it.

      Place the round on a baking tray, and bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes, then turn down the heat to 400 degrees F, and cook for 30 minutes more. When cooked, the loaf will sound slightly hollow when tapped on the base and be golden in color.
      Cook's Note: I often turn it upside down for the last 5 minutes of cooking.

      Allow to cool on a wire rack.

      Variations:
      White Soda Scones: Make the dough as above but flattened into a round approximately 2 1/2 1-inch deep. Cut into scones, and cook for 15 to 20 minutes at 450 degrees F.

      White Soda Bread or Scones with Herbs: Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of freshly chopped herbs, such as rosemary, sage, thyme, chives, parsley or lemon balm, to the dry ingredients, and make as above.

      Spotted Dog: Add 3 1/2 ounces sultanas (golden raisins), raisins or currants, or a mixture of all three, to the dry ingredients, and make as above.

      We bake this bread every day at the cookery school, and it is very quick and simple to make at home, too. This is the basic recipe but there are so many sweet and savory variations that you can try - chocolate, raisins, cinnamon, cubes of crispy bacon, cheese, herbs . . . the possibilities are endless.

      The deep cross in the loaf is supposed to let out the fairies - so that the bread won't be jinxed by evil spirits! In reality, of course, it's just to allow the heat to penetrate the loaf as it's cooking.

      COMMENT ON THIS PROJECT

          

      Sign in

      All fields are required.

      E-mail Address:

      Password:

      Remember me on this computer

      Signing in

      Please enter your email address and we will send your password

      E-mail Address

      Your password has been sent and should arrive in your mailbox very soon.

      Not a member?

      Sign up for My Cooking Channel to share photos, show off your style, and connect to an enthusiastic and helpful community.

      It's free and easy.

      Review This Recipe

      You must be logged in to review this recipe.

      5

      Newest Ratings and Reviews

      Read all 1 reviews

      • on October 19, 2011

        Flag

        My husband loves this bread and when I make it, I can't keep it around very long. It's easy and taste great. I think it's a light bread. Thanks for coming up with such a simple recipe, Rachel.

        people found this review Helpful.
        Was this review helpful to you? Yes | No
      Advertisement

      On TV

      *ALL TIMES EASTERN
      ON AIR
      NOW
      TONIGHT
      10:00
      PM

      what's hot

      Taco Trip

      Get Cooking Channel on your TV.