Just how I love pretty much all kinds of cake, I also love all kinds of bread. Sourdough, roti, granary, flat bread, bloomer, wraps, focaccia – you name it, I eat it. All except that horrid plasticy stuff you get ready sliced at the supermarket that smells more like chemicals than bread. Yuck!
As patience is definitely not one of my virtues, I’ve sadly never baked my own bread before. I’ve always loved the idea, but I just can’t bear the thought of waiting around all that time for my dough to proof (prove?).
So when The Man’s parents presented a deliciously fresh loaf of Soda Bread the other Sunday and told me that it took only 40 minutes to make with no kneading, yeast or proofing – I was sold!
- 170g self-raising wholemeal flour
- 170g plain flour
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 290ml/½ pint buttermilk (I used a 284ml Pot and topped up with regular milk)
- Preheat the oven to 200°C – Gas 6.
- Tip the flours, salt and bicarbonate of soda into a large mixing bowl and stir.
- Make a well in the centre and pour in the buttermilk, mixing quickly with a large fork to form a soft dough. (Add more or less milk depending on the consistency – you don’t want it too wet and sticky.)
- Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead briefly. Form into a round and flatten the dough slightly before placing on a lightly floured baking sheet.
- Cut a cross on the top and bake for about 30 minutes or until the loaf sounds hollow when tapped. Cool on a wire rack.
As you can see, my first attempt was far from perfect. For starters I was much too timid when I cut the cross in the top, which not only ruined the look aesthetically but also compromised the bake ever so slightly. Still it was so simple and satisfying that I’ll definitely be trying it again soon.