Irish Soda BreadFrom marthastewart.com
4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons caraway seeds
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold
2 cups golden or dark raisins
1 1/2 scant cups buttermilk
1 large egg
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 large egg yolk
1 tablespoon heavy cream
- Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, and caraway seeds until well combined.
- Using a pastry cutter or a fork, cut in butter until the mixture feels like coarse meal.
- Stir in raisins until evenly distributed.
- In a small bowl, whisk together buttermilk, egg, and baking soda until well combined.
- Pour buttermilk mixture into the flour-and-butter mixture all at once, and stir with a wooden spoon until all the liquid is absorbed and the mixture begins to hold together. It should resemble a rough biscuit dough.
- Shape the dough into a round, dome-shaped loaf about 8 inches in diameter.
- Lift the loaf from the bowl, and transfer it to the prepared baking sheet.
- In a small bowl, mix the egg yolk and cream together.
- With a pastry brush, brush the egg wash over the loaf.
- With a sharp knife or razor, incise a cross, about 1/2 inch deep, into the top of the loaf.
- Bake, rotating halfway through, until it is deep golden brown and a wooden skewer comes out clean when inserted into the center, about 70 minutes.
- Remove from oven, and transfer bread from the baking sheet to a wire rack to cool.