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Soda bread
Ben W Bell Soda Bread Farl 05 June 2007.jpg
A soda farl; made by cutting a flattened round of dough into four pieces, then baking.
Type Quick bread
Main ingredients Flour, sodium bicarbonate, salt, buttermilk
Cookbook: Soda bread  Media: Soda bread
Whole wheat soda bread (known as wheaten bread in parts of Ireland)
Polish flat soda bread (known as Proziaki in Podkarpacie)

Soda bread (Irish: arán sóide, Scots: fardel, Serbian: česnica/чесница) is a variety of quick bread traditionally made in a variety of cuisines in which sodium bicarbonate (otherwise known as baking soda) is used as a leavening agent instead of the more common yeast. The ingredients of traditional soda bread are flour, bread soda, salt, and buttermilk. The buttermilk in the dough contains lactic acid, which reacts with the baking soda to form tiny bubbles of carbon dioxide. Other ingredients can be added such as butter, egg, raisins, or nuts.

Origin[edit]

During the early years of European settlement of the Americas, settlers and some groups of Indigenous peoples of the Americas used soda or pearl ash, more commonly known as potash (pot ash) or potassium carbonate, as a leavening agent (the forerunner to baking soda) in quick breads.[1] In the US, soda breads were first publicised by Amelia Simmons as a quick and cheap method of bread making in her book American Cookery,[2] published in 1796. By 1824, The Virginia Housewife by Mary Randolph was published containing a recipe for Soda Cake.[3]

In Europe, soda breads began to appear in the mid-19th century when bicarbonate of soda first became available for use as a raising agent. Breads, griddle cakes and scones with bicarbonate of soda and cream of tartar or tartaric acid became popular in Austria, Polish cuisine, Britain and Ireland.[4] Traditional soda bread, eaten in Serbian cuisine, also uses bicarbonate of soda, particularly the traditional česnica (Serbian Cyrillic: Чесница), a soda bread made at Christmas.

Ireland[edit]

Home-made Irish brown soda bread

In Ireland, the flour is typically made from soft wheat; so soda bread is best made with a cake or pastry flour (made from soft wheat), which has lower levels of gluten than a bread flour. In some recipes, the buttermilk is replaced by live yogurt or even stout. Bakers recommend the minimum amount of mixing of the ingredients before baking; the dough should not be kneaded[citation needed].

Various forms of soda bread are popular throughout Ireland. Soda breads are made using wholemeal, white flour, or both. In Ulster, the wholemeal variety is usually known as wheaten bread and normally sweetened, while the term "soda bread" is restricted to the white savoury form. In the southern provinces of Ireland, the wholemeal variety is usually known as brown bread and is almost identical to the Ulster wheaten. In some parts of Fermanagh, the white flour form of the bread is described as fadge. [5] [6]

The soda farl or "griddle cakes", "griddle bread" (or "soda farls" in Ulster) take a more rounded shape and have a cross cut in the top to allow the bread to expand. The griddle cake or farl is a more flattened type of bread. It is cooked on a griddle, allowing it to take a more flat shape and split into four sections. The soda farl is one of the distinguishing elements of the Ulster fry, where it is served alongside potato bread, also in farl form.[7]

Scotland[edit]

In Scotland, varieties of soda breads and griddle sodas include bannocks and farls (from fardel: Scots for a fourth), soda scones or soda farls using baking powder or baking soda as a leavening agent giving them a light and airy texture.[8][9][10]

Bannocks are flat cakes of barley or oatmeal dough formed into a round or oval shape, then cooked on a griddle (or girdle, in the Scots). The most authentic versions are unleavened, but from the early 19th century bannocks have been made using baking powder, or a combination of baking soda and buttermilk or clabbered milk.[8] Before the 19th century, bannocks were cooked on a bannock stane (Scots for stone), a large, flat, rounded piece of sandstone, placed directly onto a fire, then used as a cooking surface.[11] Several varieties of bannock include Selkirk bannocks, beremeal bannocks, Michaelmas bannock, Yetholm bannock, and Yule bannock.[8]

The traditional soda farl is used in the Full Scottish breakfast along with the potato scone (Scots: tattie scone).

Serbia[edit]

Members of a Serbian family break soda bread[citation needed] or česnica at a Christmas dinner

In Serbian tradition, soda bread is prepared by various rules and rituals[citation needed]. A coin is often put into the dough during the kneading; other small objects may also be inserted. At the beginning of Christmas dinner, the česnica is rotated three times counter-clockwise, before being broken among the family members. The person who finds the coin in his piece of the bread will supposedly be exceptionally lucky in the coming year. Before baking, the upper surface of the loaf may be inscribed with various symbols,[12] such as a Christogram, or stars, circles, and impressions of keys or combs.[13]

Australia[edit]

Damper is a traditional Australian bread prepared in a similar style to the pan breads found in North American and native Inuit cuisine. First documented in 1827 and prepared by farm-men, damper was a quick and easy way to prepare bread in the Australian bush.[14] The word damper derives from the English word ‘snack’ or to dampen the flour in the fire or one's appetite.[15]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.davidwalbert.com/2010/02/03/early-american-gingerbread-cakes/
  2. ^ Simmons, Amelia; Mary Tolford Wilson (1984) [1958]. The First American Cookbook (1984 reprint ed.). Mineola, NY: Dover. ISBN 0-486-24710-4. 
  3. ^ The Virginia Housewife by Mary Randolph 1824
  4. ^ English Bread and Yeast Cookery, Elizabeth David [Penguin:Middlesex England] 1977 (p. 517-8)
  5. ^ "Fermanagh Gold Thread". 
  6. ^ "Irish Blessings Tours". 
  7. ^ Ulster Fry: Channel 4
  8. ^ a b c "Bannock". Practically Edible: The Web's Biggest Food Encyclopaedia. Retrieved 2008-10-18. 
  9. ^ Ingram, Christine; Jennie Shapter (2003). BREAD: the breads of the world and how to bake them at home. (Originally published as The World Encyclopedia of Bread and Bread Making.) London: Hermes House. p. 54. ISBN 0-681-87922-X. 
  10. ^ Clayton, Bernard Jr. (2003). Bernard Clayton's New Complete Book of Breads. New York: Simon & Schuster. p. 555. ISBN 0-7432-3472-3. 
  11. ^ Feilden, Rosemary (1999). "Bannock Stane at Aberdeen University's Virtual Museum". Aberdeen University. Retrieved 2009-11-12. 
  12. ^ Plotnikova, A. A. (2001). "Чесница". In Svetlana Mikhaylovna Tolstaya and Ljubinko Radenković. Словенска митологија: енциклопедијски речник [Slavic mythology: encyclopedic dictionary] (in Serbian). Belgrade: Zepter Book World. pp. 577–78. ISBN 86-7494-025-0. 
  13. ^ Vukmanović, Jovan (1962). "Božićni običaji u Boki Kotorskoj" [Christmas traditions in the Bay of Kotor]. Zbornik za narodni život i običaje Južnih Slovena (in Serbian) (Zagreb: The Yugoslav Academy of Sciences and Arts) 40: 491–503. Retrieved 2010-01-04. 
  14. ^ Austral English: A Dictionary of Australasian Words, Phrases and Usages By Edward Ellis Morris Cambridge University Press, 2011 p114
  15. ^ One continuous picnic: a gastronomic history of Australia By Michael Symons Melbourne Univ. Publishing, 2007. p31[no source I can find states this bread was brought over to Australia by Irish immigrants]

External links[edit]


Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soda_bread — Please support Wikipedia.
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Canadian Running Magazine (blog)

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Thu, 07 Apr 2016 09:13:06 -0700

As we head into spring, with the weather being so beautiful in Vancouver, I opted for a lighter fare: Irish soda bread. It's a rather dense bread as it's made without yeast. When it's fresh out of the oven, it's crispy exterior and soft doughy inside ...

Fox News

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Thu, 03 Mar 2016 12:04:21 -0800

Soda bread gets its name because you use baking soda, or “bread soda” as it is known in Ireland, to make the bread rise. The baking soda also replaces the yeast and time spent kneading the dough. According to the Society for the Preservation of Irish ...

InStyle

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Mon, 07 Mar 2016 15:15:00 -0800

St. Patrick's Day has become synonymous with green beer, but this time around, we're planning to avoid the artificially dyed beverage in favor of an authentic homage to the Emerald Isle. This four-ingredient soda bread recipe comes courtesy of Ireland ...

Toronto Star

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Fri, 29 Apr 2016 12:52:30 -0700

Beautiful linen tea towel printed with Georgia O'Keefe's recipe for Irish soda bread from Toronto-based artist Heather Shaw. Tea Towel with recipe. $14.39 Canadian/free shipping. Ready to ship in 1-3 business days. 2. Room 2046. Add a cheerful tea ...

New York Times (blog)

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Mon, 28 Dec 2015 09:33:37 -0800

When baking soda was introduced in the early 19th century, Irish home cooks adopted the product almost immediately. With soda, a loaf of bread could be ready in as little as one hour, as opposed to using yeast or sourdough starters, which require ...

Tallahassee.com

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Wed, 16 Mar 2016 15:02:06 -0700

Back in the 1800s when baking soda was first introduced it made making Irish soda bread the easiest and least expensive way to put bread on the table and it meant that people who didn't have an oven — and virtually nobody had an oven in Ireland then ...

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Mary Loughran's Irish Wheaten Bread, a version of Irish soda bread has been popular with readers since we first published it in 1997. It's from Mary Loughran, mother of former Foodday staff member Siobhan Loughran Taylor. Mother and daughter are both ...
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