I have a love/hate relationship with Irish Soda Bread. The stuff you buy in the store here in New England around St Patrick's day is filled with raisins and caroway seeds, neither of which my family likes. I hate having to pick the seeds out of my teeth, even though they have a nice flavor.
Every recipe I have tried at home has given me pretty nasty dry crumbly bread that, although it sops up the juices from the New England boiled dinner ok, cloys up the mouth and ends up almost gagging me. Not a happy experience, I tell you.
Recently, my husband did the grocery shopping (always an experience in finding something novel in the grocery bag when he gets home) and he bought a corned beef brisket. With the weather finally getting cold around here, that was a perfect thing for supper.
Well, I went to make the same old Irish soda bread and saw that I had all I needed in the fridge, including the sour cream. A bit later, when I pulled the sour cream out, I realised it wasnt that at all but cottage cheese! I went with serendipity and made the most amazing soda bread yet!
So thats right, this recipe uses cottage cheese (large curd) instead of sour cream. Its so moist, doesnt fall to pieces, soaks up all the juices you would want and stays moist a good few days. Its a major plus that it doesnt cloy up and you dont have to extract it from the roof of your mouth like peanut butter (something that always happened with the other soda breads I have had.)
Try this recipe (below), let me know what you think!
Super Moist Irish Soda Bread Recipe (with a neat twist!)
4 1/2 C All purpose flour
1/2 C sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1 1/4 C cultured buttermilk
1 C large curd cottage cheese
1. Preheat oven to 350 F
2. Spray a 9 inch non-stick springform pan with flour-Pam.
3. In a large bowl, combine and sift all the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, salt, baking soda, baking powder).
4. In another bowl, beat the eggs with the buttermilk and then mix in the cottage cheese.
5. Slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix with a spoon until the dough comes together.
6. In the large bowl, knead the dough enough to incorporate all the stray flour in the bowl (will be sticky).
7. Remove to the springform pan and place in the preheated oven.
Watch the color and allow to bake until it reaches the color you like (deep redish brown in my case) and then cover with foil for the remainder of the cooking time (65-70 mins total)
8. Remove from the oven and pop open the springform pan. Slide the bread onto a wire rack to cool. Can serve 8 large slices, 16 medium. Serve with butter!
9. Store in a plastic zip-lock bag.