One of my favorite things about Saint Patrick’s Day is the delicious Irish Soda Bread. I’ve never made it before because I always though that the process and recipe would be too complicated. It was not until I watched a recent Episode of Barefoot Contessa, my favorite show on Food Network, that I realized that making homemade Irish Soda wasn’t so scary.
I was so excited to see that she would be making one of my favorite Saint Patrick’s Day treats. And she made the process appear so simple. But leave it to Ina Garten to make everything look easy and effortless! This recipe is so simple to make (no proofing required), and great for someone who is new to the world of bread making like me. The only twist I gave to this recipe is the dried apricots just because I had them around and I was pleasantly surprised by the delicate sweetness and texture that it added to the bread.
Frankly, this delicious and light bread can be made any time of the year. Slather in real butter and it is the perfect afternoon treat. Below is the recipe and video.
4 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for currants
5 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 3/4 cups cold buttermilk, shaken
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon grated orange zest
1 cup dried currants or raisins (I added 1 spoon of dried apricots but that is optional)
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
- Combine the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the butter and mix on low speed until the butter is mixed into the flour.
- With a fork, lightly beat the buttermilk, egg, and orange zest together in a measuring cup. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the buttermilk mixture to the flour mixture. Combine the currants with 1 tablespoon of flour and mix into the dough. It will be very wet.
- Dump the dough onto a well-floured board and knead it a few times into a round loaf. Place the loaf on the prepared sheet pan and lightly cut an X into the top of the bread with a serrated knife. Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. When you tap the loaf, it will have a hollow sound.
- Cool on a baking rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.
You will know the Irish soda bread is done because it will make a hollow sound when lightly tapped. Keeps wrapped for a day or so. Below is the actual video of Ina Garten making the bread. I am a visual person so looking at the video was a big help.
I know you will love this bread!!!
Happy St. Patty’s everyone and happy baking.