The online magazine
dedicated to the
discussion & revival
of British foodways.


Soda bread

Soda bread is a snap, but beware; because the batter requires buttermilk the bread does go rancid after a few days. Then again it is unlikely to last that long. Ineluctably Irish, and wonderful. Our recipe derives from one of seven variants found in All in the Cooking, the universal home economics text of Irish schools for four decades beginning in 1946.




  • 1 lb flour
  • heaped ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • about 10 oz buttermilk




Preheat the oven to 375˚.

  1. Sift the flour into a big bowl with the soda and salt.
  2. Dig a well in the center of the flour and gradually mix in enough milk to form a dough that just adheres. Try not to overmilk it.
  3. Knead the dough lightly on a floured board, form it into a shallow domed disc and cut a cross into the top.
  4. Set the bread on an oven sheet lined with parchment or silicone paper and bake until a toothpick emerges clean from the center, usually in about 45 minutes.


-Do not use nonfat buttermilk. It is no good for making soda bread.

-To make brown soda bread use 10 oz unsifted whole wheat flour mixed with 6 oz sifted white and increase the amount of soda to a level teaspoon.