|The view from any given road in Ireland. Simple. Beautiful. Simply Beautiful.|
|In a very, very old garden at Huntingdon Castle in Ireland.|
|At one of the many places in Ireland said to be |
where St.Patrick baptized people.
Irish Spiced Soda Bread
Cook Time: 40 minutes
· 3 cups raisins
· 2 cups water
· 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
· 2 teaspoons baking soda
· 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
· 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg (I usually do a 1/2 tsp because nutmeg is strong)
· 1 teaspoon salt
· 1/2 teaspoon allspice (I usually do a full tsp allspice because I really like it)
· 1/2 cup butter
· 1 1/2 cups sugar
· 3 eggs, beaten
· 1 cup liquid from soaking raisins
In a saucepan, combine raisins and water; bring to a boil. Cover and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes; drain and reserve 1 cup of liquid (if not enough liquid left, add a little water to make 1 cup). Set raisins and reserved liquid aside.Sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and allspice. In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar; add eggs and the raisin liquid and mix until well blended. Stir in dry ingredients until blended; add raisins. Pour batter into 2 greased and floured 9x5x3-inch loaf pans. Bake at 350° for 35 to 40 minutes. Cool soda bread in pan for 5 minutes, then turn out onto a rack to cool completely.
I don't have 2 bread pans so I've used a round cake pan and a muffin tin. The muffin tin works beautifully although it bakes through faster so you have to keep an eye on them. But a muffin is the perfect serving size for this bread and it makes it so easy to just grab one and enjoy. And, my husband is not a big fan of raisins, so you can make one loaf with raisins and one loaf without (still using the raisin liquid but not the raisins themselves).
So in closing for this St. Patrick's Day post...I leave you with my favorite Irish blessing.
May the road rise to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back,
The sun shine warm upon your face,
The rain fall soft upon your fields,
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the hollow
Of His hand.