An occasional series whereby Jule admits she is not Julia

Happy St. Pat’s, kids. In honor of the religious holiday (worshipping at the church of green beads and beer, apparently), I have attempted Irish soda bread. This is a recipe I’ve tried several times in the past, mostly for a party I used to have on my porch in Pennsylvania. The parade, such as it was, went up one side of my house and down the other. People who should know better came over, drank too much, soaked it up with soda bread, and yelled down to unsuspecting Girl Scouts, “Hey! Show us your cookies!”

This year, things are more subdued. Also, the soda bread did not turn out as well as I remember. I think the oven was set too high. Also, it could use another tablespoon of sugar. CPers, you decide. It’s in the lounge with some Irish butter and orange marmalade.

Recipe, slightly tweaked, after the jump.

* 4 cups all-purpose flour
* 5 tablespoons white sugar
* 1 teaspoon baking soda
* 1 tablespoon baking powder
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 cup margarine, softened
* 1 cup buttermilk
* 1 egg
For Glaze:
* 1/4 cup butter, melted
* 1/4 cup buttermilk

1. Preheat oven to 360 degrees. Lightly grease a baking sheet.
2. In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and margarine. Stir in 1 cup of buttermilk and egg. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead slightly. Form dough into a round and place on prepared baking sheet. In a small bowl, combine melted butter with 1/4 cup buttermilk; brush loaf with this mixture. Use a sharp knife to cut an ‘X’ into the top of the loaf.
3. Bake in preheated oven for 45 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean, about 30 to 50 minutes. Brush the loaf with the butter mixture while it bakes, about every 15 minutes.