I finally managed to shake off my cold so I could spend Sunday afternoon in the kitchen. First up was an amazing soda bread which I knew I would make as soon as I saw the recipe. And so with a little help from the husband – him adding and mixing the ingredients and me giving it a quick knead we soon knocked up two perfect loaves together.
I’m a big fan of Soda bread as it’s quick and easy to make, and the ingredients list is usually cheap and cheerful. This one was a little bit more expensive with the addition of walnuts, blue cheese, sultanas and buttermilk, but it is definitely worth the expense and I would go so far as say this is my all-time favourite soda bread recipe.
I have to admit that I would never have put blue cheese or sultanas together as a combination, but the flavours along with the texture of the walnuts works so well together. There is very much a salty, sweet combination going on but it works amazingly well and is something I haven’t been able to get enough of. And if you’re a bit lazy when it comes to making work lunches this is a really quick and easy option as this bread incredibly filling so you only need a couple of slices.
I’ve been toying with the idea of making a sweet soda bread for a while so after the success of this recipe I’m definitely going to have a go at making some cinnamon and raisin soda bread.
The following recipe makes two medium loaves.
- 200g stilton
- 150g walnuts
- 100g sultanas
- 600g plain white flour
- 400g wholemeal flour
- 2tsp bicaronate of soda
- 2tsp salt
- 800ml buttermilk
- Heat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6.
- Trim the rind off the stilton, then crumble into a bowl. Add the walnuts and sultanas and mix well.
- Tip all the flour into a large mixing bowl and add the bicarb of soda and salt. Mix thoroughly. Make a well in the centre and pour in the buttermilk.
- Working quickly add the cheese mixture and using either your hand or a wooden spoon mix the ingredients together to make a slightly soft, shaggy-looking dough.
- If the mixture feels dry or the dough is difficult to bring together add more buttermilk 1tbsp at a time.
- Lightly dust the worktop with wholemeal flour and turn out the dough.
- Divide into 2 equal portions.
- Gently knead one portion for a few seconds to form a ball.
- Set on a baking sheet lined with baking parchment and cut a deep cross into the ball. Sprinkle with flour. Repeat with the rest of the dough.
- Bake the loaves in a heated oven for 30-35 minutes or until they are golden brown and sound hollow when tapped on the underside.
- Check after 25 minutes and rotate the baking sheets if necessary so they bake evenly.
- Transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool.