Ah, the classic Irish Soda Bread! The simple combination of flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and buttermilk. Of all the traditional foods served to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, this is my favorite. Somewhere along the line I thought adding chopped apricots and chocolate was a good idea, and fell in love with it.
This classic Irish bread has a twist with the addition of apricots and dark chocolate. This sunny bright bread is tender, chewy, and light. Most of the sweetness comes from the juicy apricots and rich dark chocolate chips, under a crackly-crunch sugar crust. I couldn’t let St. Patrick’s Day go by without a nod to this delicious bread. Butter? Check. Marmalade? Check. Honey? Check.
Prep time: 10 minutes
Bake: 50-60 minutes
3 cups flour, sifted
1 stick butter, room temp, cut into pieces
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups apricots, quartered, soaked in warm water and drained
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups buttermilk or soured milk ( adding vinegar)
Milk to brush the top
1/4 tsp sugar
Tie on an apron and turn on the oven! Let’s bake!
Set oven to 400 degrees
Grease an 8-9 inch springform pan or line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Measure out the apricots, place in a bowl and cover with water. Microwave for 1 minute, set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, salt, baking soda, baking powder. Cut the butter into the flour using a pastry fork.
Add into the flour the drained, apricots and chocolate chips, stir to coat with flour.
Gently stir the buttermilk into the dry ingredients using
a spatula or wooden spoon just until it looks like a shaggy mess. Do not over mix. The dough will be very wet but should be firm enough to hold its shape. With floured hands, form a round, 10 inches diameter in a prepared springform pan pan, lined baking sheet, or pan.
Then using a floured dough scraper or sharp knife, deeply score the bread
into 4 wedges, lightly cutting. Sprinkle with flour for a rustic look or brush with milk and dust with sugar.
Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 375 degrees and rotate. Continue to bake for 15-20 minutes, until the loaf is golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature. Serve with butter or honey or Both!
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
Thanks for stopping by,