While I am a total cynic about Valentine’s Day (do we really need a day to tell our loved ones we love them?), I totally love St. Patrick’s day. Not the going to bars and drinking beer part but the having friends over and eating corned beef, colcannon and soda bread part.
My St. Patrick’s day menu doesn’t have much room for variation but I try to bring something new to the table every year. Most times, the variation comes in the form of a new soda bread recipe. I was surprised to find so many variations on soda bread. I thought the only variation I would find is whether to add raisins or leave the raisins out.
I decided to try the rye soda bread version because the flavors of corned beef and cabbage go well with the flavor of rye and I love rye bread in general. I was not disappointed by rye soda bread. The caraway seed fills the house with a lovely aroma as it bakes and the rye taste will have you making this all through the year, not just on St. Patrick’s day.
Rye Soda Bread
1 cup rye flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tsp caraway seeds
1 tsp salt
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons buttermilk
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a medium size bowl, combine the flours, caraway seeds, salt, baking powder, and baking soda, stir to combine. Make a well in the center of the flour and slowly pour in the buttermilk. Mix well. Dump the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead the dough for two or three minutes. Lightly spray a baking sheet with non stick cooking spray. Shape the dough into a ball and place on the baking sheet. Gently press the dough into a circle about half an inch thick or until the bread sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom. Use a serrated knife to cut an x into the top of the dough. Bake for 30 minutes. Cool 30 minutes before cutting into the bread or it gets really crumbly.