Friday, February 5, 2010

Irish Soda Bread with Mardi Gras Sprinkles

Irish Soda Bread or ISB as we call it in our house is a traditional Celtic bread made with buttermilk, eggs, baking soda and raisins.  This one was sprinkled with crystal sugar in (mostly) Mardi Gras colors.  

Here is the recipe:

4 cups of flour
1/4 cup of sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/3 cup unsalted butter (melted and cooled.)  If using salted butter, omit salt.
1 1/3 cup buttermilk
1 egg
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup raisins or currants or cranberry or a combination of what you like
1 tablespoon caraway seed

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.  Whisk the first four ingredients together and set aside.  Measure the buttermilk in a cup, add the egg and baking soda.  Whisk together.  Add the wet ingredients into the dry and mix until just combined.  Add fruit and caraway seed if desired.  Again mix until combined but do not overmix.  Turn out onto a baking sheet and make an "X" into the top of the loaf, but don't cut too deeply.  Bake for about 1 hour.  Remove from oven, let cool and enjoy with butter.

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