Saint Patrick’s Day celebrates the culture and heritage of the Irish people and what better way to pay tribute than with Irish soda bread. For a vegan recipe as mouth-watering as any that will be eaten by those wearing the green this year, we turned to our good friends at the Spiral House in Saugerties, New York, and their recently published book, For Goodness Sake: Plant-Based Recipes from the Spiral House Kitchen © 2015, featuring recipes by Chef Diane Hagedorn and photographs by Andrea Barrist Stern.
First off, who would think you could make it without buttermilk? Actually, buttermilk is easy to veganize with the same workaround used by any savvy cook caught without the conventional ingredient: Add some apple cider vinegar or lemon juice to whatever plant-based milk you have on hand. When your bread is ready, serve it warm, or at room temperature if you can’t wait. Recipe and photo reprinted by permission.
- 1 ½ cups non-dairy milk
- 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons sugar (optional)
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon caraway seeds
- 1 cup dried currants or raisins
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 4 tablespoons Earth Balance Vegan Buttery Stick, melted
- Preheat the oven to 350º F.
- Combine the milk with the vinegar or lemon juice and stir to make a plant-based buttermilk.
- To a large mixing bowl, add the flour, sugar if using, baking soda, caraway seeds, currants or raisins, and salt. Whisk to combine.
- Slowly mix the buttermilk and 2 tablespoons of melted Earth Balance into the flour mixture, stirring with a wooden spoon until it is slightly sticky. You might not use all the buttermilk; you don’t want it as wet as the batter of many quick breads. Don’t overmix.
- Shape the dough into a ball. Don’t overwork or it will become tough.
- Place the dough on a greased baking sheet. Use a serrated knife to score an X at the center of the dough approximately ¼ inch deep.
- Brush the dough with the remaining 2 tablespoons of melted Earth Balance.
- Bake for 30 to 45 minutes, until bread is golden and cooked through. Test for doneness by inserting a toothpick. If it comes out clean, it’s done. If not, bake for a few minutes more.
- Let cool slightly before slicing.
Note: This bread makes great toast.
Visit the For Goodness Sake blog for more delicious and inventive vegan recipes by Chef Diane Hagedorn, luscious photography by Andrea Barrist Stern, gardening tips, and information about the vegan lifestyle. You can purchase the book while you are there, at online sellers, or from your local independent bookstore.