Here is the Ancient Formula devised by leprechauns in a mist-shrouded vale long before the dawn of recorded time. It was passed on secretly through the mother’s lineage. How I got my hands on it is a mystery the world may never know. But every Saint Patrick’s Day I break it out, go over to Bill’s house, and cook multiple loaves. The highlight of the day is the ceremonial First Bite, which Bill loves. After the bread cools, I distribute a loaf or two to family members in town. It never lasts long.
Ye Olde Mullooly Irish Soda Bread
2 cups flour
2 tablespoons brown sugar
11/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup of golden raisins
In a medium-sized bowl combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, butter and salt. Stir to blend. Add buttermilk and mix thoroughly into a soft dough. Add in raisins.
Gently knead, then form the dough into a round loaf. Place on a lightly oiled pan.
With a sharp knife inscribed a cross about 1/2 inch deep in the across the center of the round loaf. Bake at 375 for 40 minutes, until a medium golden brown. Remove from pan, place flat side down on a wire rack to let cool. Let Seanie Fergus have the First Bite.
Mind you, these are suggested guidelines to make one loaf. I usually deviate from the teaspoon/tablespoon rigidity, and get pretty liberal with the amounts as the multiple mixtures go on. Especially with the raisins, the more the better. My policy: a raisin in every bite!
Enjoy, and Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!
Happy to share the Ancient Formula with you,
Mike (relation of TheAnthroGeek)