Smoked salmon on Irish brown soda bread

Soda bread uses sodium bicarbonate in order to rise instead of yeast

(makes 1 loaf)


  • 400g stone-ground wholemeal flour 
  • 100g bran, wheatgerm and pinhead oatmeal (to make it coarser) 
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1-1½ level tsp bicarbonate of soda 
  • 1 organic egg, plus 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 425ml butter milk (or milk with about ¼ -  ½ squeezed lemon)
  • 2 generous tbsp seeds (sunflower, pumpkin, sesame, poppy, linseed or others), optional


  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200°C. 
  2. Put all dry ingredients – wholemeal flour, bicarbonate of soda and salt – into a large mixing bowl and combine.
  3. Lightly whisk buttermilk, egg and oil in another bowl.
  4. Grease and flour a loaf tin (23 x 12.5 x 5cm).  
  5. Make a well in the dry ingredients. 
  6. Pour about a third of the milk mixture into the well.  
  7. Mix the mixture with your hand until it begins to get sticky. Don’t over-mix as the dough will become tough.  
  8. Add another third of the milk mixture and mix again.  
  9. Finally add the last third and mix. The dough is supposed to be wet and sticky, so much so that you can pour it into the loaf tin. 
  10. Once the mixture is in the loaf tin, place it in the oven on the middle shelf for 45 mins to 1 hr. 
  11. Once the bread is nicely brown, and sounds hollow when tapped, remove from the tin and leave it to cool completely on a wire rack before cutting.