my mother, along with passing along my grandmother’s recipe for devil’s food cake, also passed along her recipe for the most amazing irish soda bread. it’s different from this one, which i found on grouprecipes — my grandmother’s involved sour cream instead of buttermilk, and has a different, much lighter texture. and this one is called irish bannock, not irish soda bread. but this recipe, which is practically vegan (no eggs! can you imagine a bread recipe with no eggs? i say practically because it does call for buttermilk, but i wonder if you can create soy buttermilk the way you can make regular?) and very very simple, has definitely taken its place among my cherished irish recipes. i may only be 25%, but it’s a proud 25%!
this loaf is crusty where it counts and soft where it counts, with a really light subtle flavor but a nice substantial texture. i didn’t even do anything special to it, and it came out perfectly! apparently altitude does not effect bread?
the only glitch was, as usual, in me not exactly following the recipe. it has an exact measurement for buttermilk (1 cup), but it says to “add until dough is soft” or something like that. i just dumped the whole cup in, and ended up with waaaay too sticky dough. which meant that, when i turned it out only my “work surface” (for work surface read: aluminum foil), that i had to keep adding flour until i could knead it properly. but i remember reading somewhere that that’s ok. it might have changed the flavor and texture a bit — i mean, i imagine that throws off all the sugar and baking soda and powder rations — but i still really really like it. as i professed recently and less recently, if H doesn’t make me breakfast than i’m likely to just shove a piece of bread in my mouth before leaving for work. but this way, i’ve got something decent to grab!
p.s. how i make buttermilk: 1 tbs apple cider vinegar to 1 c milk. this is something that was passed along with the devil’s food cake recipe, since my mother thinks its silly to buy a special carton of something you can make that easily at home. because of this, i have no idea how actual buttermilk that you buy in a carton looks, tastes, or bakes — but i’m fine with that.