That’s me, putting my first loaf of bread into the new!!! oven!!! I made fish chowder and wholemeal soda bread on Sunday evening, for dinner with Phil’s father (he usually comes to dinner on Fridays and Sundays), and given it was a rainy, miserable day, with 70mph winds (which explains the hair), it felt like the perfect thing to be eating.
I bake plenty of yeast bread, but soda bread is just so quick and easy to make, and the loaf is small enough that we can eat about half of one between the three of us for dinner. I split the other half in two pieces, and send one home with the father-in-law, along with the rest of the soup, and end up eating the other quarter of the loaf myself. Soda bread doesn’t age well, but it toasts brilliantly, and with a bit of sweet butter and some honey makes a fine breakfast.
The internet is full of soda bread recipes, and here is mine:
Preheat the oven to 200 C, and line a baking sheet with greaseproof paper.
175 grams self-raising unbleached white flour
175 grams wholemeal flour
300 ml pot of buttermilk
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
a few grinds of the salt mill.
Mix together the flours, salt and baking soda (I just chuck them all in a big bowl, and then use a fork to stir them together) and make a well in the centre. Pour in the buttermilk, and quickly mix it with the dry ingredients. Add more liquid (milk or water will do, if you’ve used up all your buttermilk) or flour if necessary. The dough should be soft and slightly sticky. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, give it a quick, gentle knead, form it into a ball, and transfer to baking sheet. Flatten it slightly, and slash a cross in the top. (I am in bad need of a grignette! My slash totally sucked.) Bake for approximately 30 minutes; I start checking after about 20. Usual rules apply with bread: when you rap it on the bottom, if it sounds hollow, it’s done. Cool it on a wire rack.
No, really, I need a grignette.