We hope everyone had a lovely St. Patrick’s Day weekend! In honor of this holiday, South Chicago Packing is sharing our recipe for Irish Soda Bread. Here in Chicago we love all things Irish. We celebrated with a slice of Irish Soda Bread slathered with creamy Irish butter, and a cup of Irish coffee before heading out to view Chicago’s green river.
Soda bread became a staple in Ireland in the 19th century following the potato famine. Its popularity was due to the fact that it required few ingredients, making it an easy and economical recipe. During this era, most homes had kitchens with open hearths, and therefore soda bread was often made in iron pots or on griddles. Some say that the tradition of marking the loaves with an “X” on the top originated for superstitious reasons. The cross was to ward off evil spirits.
Original Irish Soda Bread recipes included only flour, buttermilk, baking soda, and salt. The baking soda produced a more efficient and consistent result. The original recipe has evolved over time and often includes additional ingredients such as sugar, raisins, and seeds.
If you would like to know more about the history of Irish Soda Bread, you can read up on this topic at the following link for The Society for the Preservation of Irish Soda Bread.