- Mix flour, salt, and baking soda.
- Cut in the butter until mixture resembles course meal.
- Add buttermilk and stir until moistened.
- Turn out the ball of dough and knead for 1 minute. Pat into a round, approximately 9 inches. Transfer to a buttered baking sheet and cut a large cross on top.
- Bake at 425 F for 40 minutes. The loaf will sound hollow when done.
There's something so satisfying about pulling a lovely loaf of bread out of the oven. It smelled so good baking and bread seems so daunting that the fact that it came out recognizable as a loaf of bread was delightful. You should have seen me knocking on the loaf with my ear to the crust, looking as if I expected someone to knock back and call out - come in to my loaf! because I'm sure I looked silly.
After the glee that I had produced bread wore off, I decided that Irish Soda Bread is good, but is better with butter...and even better with something fruity...something like...apple butter. So I used the Granny Smiths I had to make an apple butter that was delicious. I wasn't sure how it would turn out using Granny Smith apples, which aren't typically used for apple butter, but I have to say I was more than pleasantly surprised. Some apple butters tend to be very sweet and very clove-heavy. The tartness of the apples enhanced the sweet and the clove tastes.
I have to admit that I didn't measure anything for the apple butter. I just threw in the ingredients and surveyed by sight.
Apple Butter (Roughly)
1/2 cup of sugar
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
pinch of salt
- Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and add water just to cover the bottom.
- Bring to a boil and cook on medium heat.
- Stir and mash the apples and continue to cook.
- Cook. Cook. And cook some more. Until a dark brown color and thick enought to spread.