Then, I stumbled across a recipe for Irish cheddar and bacon soda bread on the Homesick Texan that instantly went into my "must try this at home" list. I’m a sucker for cheese, bacon and bread separately – put them together and it’s all over! Another morning of tummy-rumble-inducing food blog browsing turned up a gorgeous post by Farmette on Irish brown bread that made me instantly want to marry an Irish farmer, move to Ireland and start baking – until I remembered that I have my own wonderful Mr Ed, who patiently endures all my food talk and willingly tries new things even though he’d really much prefer going to the pub for a steak.
Anyway, all this soda bread happening in my universe meant I had to cook the soda bread that featured in the Irish Brekkie Club story this month. I couldn’t find any stoneground wholemeal flour at my local health food shop – although they had every other possible permutation of flour – so I substituted the regular stuff. I was keen to add some seeds to the mix (Paddy’s loaf had seeds in it and, even though I was picking them out of my teeth for hours, they were delicious!), but I couldn’t get the lid off the jar of sunflower seeds so had to shelve that idea. The dough came together while I was grilling some marinated chicken for dinner – a recipe from one of my favourite blogs right now: Dinner: A Love Story – and was ready by the time the washing up was done.
Miraculously, I managed to resist having a slice while it was still warm. Instead, I brought it into the office for the Feast team. All that’s remaining is crumbs! This bread has a lovely dense texture (I’m not a fan of fluffy breads), and the only adjustment I’d make is to add a little more salt. It tasted great with both raspberry jam and my current avocado and Vegemite combo (don’t judge!) – so versatile.
If you’ve steered clear of baking bread because it seemed too time-consuming, you should definitely give Irish soda bread a shot. What type of bread do you like to bake?