Irish Soda Bread: A Wholesome, Multigrain Everyday Bread
This simple Irish Soda Bread is a riff on the original which is so popular for St. Patrick’s Day here in the US. This earthy bread features a mix of flours and seeds to add a nutritional bonus into your day. If you’ve never tried it before, soda bread is a pretty different from a regular yeasted bread: hefty, thick and rich. This one is extra hearty because of the spelt and dark rye flours. But this bread takes only a short time to prepare since you don’t need to wait for the yeast to proof as you would in a regular bread. In fact, if you are super motivated and you’ve got the flour and seeds in your pantry, you can eat this bread in the next hour !
I love this bread because it’s so simple and hearty. Serve with your favorite high-quality butter or vegan butter, goat cheese, cashew cheese or with an olive oil dip, or dip into a brothy soup for a hearty meal. Please note that this bread tastes best on the first day. By the second day the texture loses some of it’s magic and it might seem a bit doughy. Turn it into bread crumbs or croutons for a Panzanella salad!
Multigrain Irish Soda Bread
2 cups unsweetened soymilk
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1¾ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1½ cups spelt flour (more for dusting + kneading)
1⅓ cups rye flour
2 Tablespoons EACH flaxseeds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds and poppy seeds
2 teaspoons baking soda
1½ teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon sucanat or sugar
- Preheat oven to 400º and flour a rimmed baking sheet.
- Whisk together the soymilk and vinegar and let stand one minute to curdle.
- Sift together the flours, seeds (reserve 2 Tablespoons of mixture), baking soda, salt and sugar. Make a well in the center of flour mixture and pour in soymilk, reserving a few teaspoons for brushing. Stir briskly until everything is just combined.
- Turn out on to a lightly floured countertop and knead for about 30 seconds, adding a few Tablespoons flour (any type) if needed to keep from sticking. Knead just until the dough comes together without cracks–but it’s VERY important not to over-knead this bread!
- Shape into a flattened ball and place dough onto baking sheet. Brush top with reserved soymilk. Use a knife and make an big ‘X’ on the top of the dough (about halfway through the loaf- be careful not to slice all the way through!). Sprinkle reserved seeds on top, being sure to get some into the cracks.
- Bake for 30 minutes on the middle rack. Carefully move the bread to the top rack and bake for another 20 minutes until bread is baked through (it should sound hollow when tapped).
- Cool on a wire rack, then slice and serve with butter or jam! This makes one rustic loaf.