Sweet Irish Soda Bread

Total Time:
1 hr 5 min
20 min
45 min

1 loaf


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt and mix well. Cut the butter and shortening into small pieces and add to the flour mixture. Using your fingers, work the cold butter and shortening into the flour mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs. Add the egg, the buttermilk, the currants and the caraway seeds and mix into the flour mixture until it is incorporated. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead gently until the dough forms a smooth ball. Place the dough into a lightly greased loaf pan. Score the top of the loaf with a very sharp knife. Brush the top of the loaf with melted butter. Sprinkle with sanding sugar. Place the loaf in the oven and bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until golden brown.

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    Made this Irish Bread and tasted Great.We had to increase the Butter due to an Allergy to Shortening.Did not change the consistency or End Results. We thoroughly enjoyed and consider a Staple.Not only an Honorary Irish Lass Once a Year! When cooler or have a bread machine to bake this lucious loaf,do not wait. We added Currants.If too hard, soften in a 1~2 ounce amount of liquid of choice. e.g.Orange juice,sherry,warm water,dark lager,stout...
    Fabulous warm with Irish butter on it. I sprinkle raw sugar over it prior to baking.I omitted the currants and caraway seeds.
    I have been making this bread for years and everyone loves it. I did make a few adjustments- skip the caraway seeds and add raisins instead of currants. It has so much more flavor that regular soda bread!!
    Followed the recipe...what a gloppy mess. Recipe also leaves out when to add the first tablespoon of sugar. Waste of time and money.

    My grandmother was an Irish immigrant. I had many a loaf of her bread and never saw a currant, raisin or caraway seed. I only had Irish soda cake when I and my cousins were younguns, soda cake has sugar in it. Once we started school we received the same soda bread as the adults.
    So Food Network, someone has been pulling your leg!
    It's a tea cake. Soda bread does not contain fruit or sweetening. But it makes a nice tea cake.
    Thank goodness I had watched Ms Contessa make this on TV. Following the recipe precisely (except that I made my own buttermilk, adding 1tbsp of vinegar to the cup of milk), I got a gooey mass. I ended up adding one additional cup of flour. The texture became kneadable, but rather than kneading, I just turned the mixture straight onto the baking dish. Top browned a bit more than I would like, but, at least it's not too floury!
    As far as soda breads go this is the best my mother said she ever had(she has been to ireland so she has eaten a lot of soda bread).
    we (two completely inexperienced bread makers) followed the recipe exactly, except that we omitted the currants and the sanding sugar for the top. when we were kneading it we had to add a lot of extra flour, but once we did we could knead it pretty easily. It turned out absolutely perfect! a little lighter and more crumbly than normal soda bread... but still delicious. Although, if you don't like caraway seeds I definitely wouldn't recommend it.
    I followed the recipe exactly and consider myself an experienced baker, but this bread turned out to be a disaster. First, the recipe seemed to have a few flaws because it did not specify when to add the normal sugar (i.e. not the sanding sugar), the dough was too soupy to knead and the top of the loaf started to burn 10 minutes into the baking process. Second, I did not enjoy how the bread tasted. The caraway seeds were too dominating.
    Everyone liked this recipe. I modified it to use rasins instead of currants...The bread turned out a bit crumbly though
    I was dissapointed in the texture, taste, and why carraway seeds? Where is the "Sweet" in the Sweet Irish Soda Bread. I substituted raisins, and I think that was the only "Sweet" I tasted in the bread. The texture was more of a Biscuit than a Bread, and too moist of a biscuit. I will try a different recipie.
    Loved this so much, I threw away my other Irish Soda Bread receipes. Substituted raisins because we like them.
    I am an Irish citizen and therefore I've made many loaves of Soda bread. This is one of the worst recipes I have come across. It was a soggy mess and then they instruct you to KNEAD it. Are they kidding?
    Oh and what happened to the sugar listed in the list of ingredients and left out of the directions? Only one Tbl. of sugar as well?
    Does anyone test these recipes or would they rather we waste our time doing it?
    This turned out OK for me but I did not care for the caraway tast. Would really like to hear Peggy's recipe from Ireland that is supposed to be better. But she posted in March of 2006. Is there anyway to contact someone that posts on these sites? Can't find anyway to contact anyone on this site. What happened to the message boards??
    I prepared this bread for our Irish dinner on Wednesday. I planned for 40 seniors in our group and this was a fantastic hit. Many had said that they did not like Irish Soda Bread so I changed this bread slightly and added 1/4 cup of sugar in teh recipe and did not put any on the top. I have been asked for the recipe several times and asked to do it again next year.
    If Emeral ever asked senior citizens to enter a contest, I hope I will be contacted. I feel he is an excellent teacher as well as chef.
    I taught home economics in the public schools and then with the extension service as well and feel that we need to help people enjoy the art of home managment as much as we can, not just a chore. Thank you for the Food Network programming. Winnie
    This soda bread I made w/ raisins instead of currants (due to lack of available supplies) and it came out delicious! The bread is nice and moist on the inside while the crust is golden brown. I ate a fresh piece w/ a drizzle of honey and it was EXCELLENT!
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