Fruit Soda Bread


Last week I was busy baking shamrock cookies for family, friends, school and work. This week I’ve been reacquainting myself with soda bread. I don’t make it as often as I should however which is strange as I always think how tasty it is when fresh out of the oven and spread with some butter preferably good Irish butter such as Kerrygold. It is fairly simple to make as there is no yeast involved just baking soda/bicarbonate of soda. I find with bread making it is trial and error as you don’t want it too dry or too sticky and you have to watch the temperature with baking as ovens vary.


The following recipe is from the Avoca Café Cookbook {I love their series of books as their recipes reflect the best of Irish cuisine and remind me of home}. I have tweeked the recipe just a smidge.


  • 3 1/2 cups/450g/1 Ib plain/all purpose flour {I like to use bread flour}
  • 1 level teaspoon of bicarbonate/baking soda 
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons or 25g/1 oz of sugar {caster if you have it}
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup/ 25g/ 1 oz of raisins or sultanas
  • Approximately 1 2/3 cup/ 400ml/ 14fl oz of buttermilk {in the past I’ve used a mix of plain natural yogurt mixed with milk when I didn’t have buttermilk on hand}
  • Makes one large loaf or cake of bread I often double the recipe so I can freeze the extra one or give to a friend


  1. Mix all the dry ingredients in a bowl you can do this by hand or I use my KitchenAid.
  2. Then gradually add the buttermilk {you may not need as much as the recipe says} and mix well to form a stiff dough not too dry or too sticky. 
  3. Shape into a mound and pop into a lightly greased 2 1b loaf tin or shape into a cake. My Mum always makes a cross on top of her soda/brown breads so I do the same, you go lightly across one side and then deeper on the other which makes it easier to cut in half later.
  4. Bake for 20 minutes in a preheated oven 190 C/375 F/ gas mark 5.

Lower the heat to 170 C/ 325 F/ gas mark 3 and bake for 25 minutes or so. Just be careful of the temperature as everyone’s oven is different so keep an eye on the bread as it bakes. The bread is done when you tap it on the bottom and it should sound hollow, you can always pop it back in the oven upside down if you are unsure and bake for a further 10 minutes. When I bake yeast breads in tins I remove from the tin for the last 5 minutes of baking time. When I remove the done bread from the oven I cut it in half and leave to cool on  a wire rack.

Wishing everyone a Happy St. Patrick’s Day/ Lá Fhéile Pádraig Sona duit


This entry was published on March 15, 2017 at 3:07 pm. It’s filed under #stpatrick'sdaybaking, Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

3 thoughts on “Fruit Soda Bread

  1. Your green topped cookies look delightful! And as for sour dough – I am miserable at it – I just make a no knead in a big cast iron pot now – so lazy I am. c


    • Hello Cecilia thanks for leaving a comment. I think if you can make no knead you’ll be able to make Soda bread, really all you need to do is make sure it’s not too sticky or dry and just keep an eye on the temperature and even if it is slightly doughy in the middle after you cut it in half I pop it back in the oven and let it bake at a lower temperature until it looks done {usually just a few minutes}. Well done regarding the no knead as I didn’t have much success with the recipe I tried. Happy Baking


  2. How CUTE are those cookies?!!? And the bread looks amazingly dense and hearty.


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