RECIPE Gluten Free Soda Bread

I was just going through my internet favourites and found a recipe I'd seen and stores ages ago. I haven't tried it out yet but thought I'd post it here in the hope that someone might give it a go and let me know how it went. I really must get around to making it myself and will update with my results when I do. The recipe is copied directly from the BBC website, who have taken it directly from the book by Darina Allen and Rosemary Kearney, 'Healthy Gluten-free Eating'.
I don't own this book but if the recipe turns out OK, I may have to make an investment!

White soda bread

Makes 1 x 750g/1lb 10oz loaf
Preparation time less than 30 mins
Cooking time 30 mins to 1 hour


275g/10oz rice flour
110g/4oz tapioca flour
50g/2oz dried milk
1 scant tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 heaped tsp gluten-free baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 heaped tsp xanthan gum
2 tbsp caster sugar
1 egg, preferably free-range, lightly beaten
300-350ml/10-12fl oz buttermilk


1. Preheat the oven to 230C/450F/Gas 8.

2. Sift all the dry ingredients together into a large bowl. Mix well by lifting the dry ingredients up into your hands and then letting them fall back into the bowl through your fingers. This adds more air and therefore more lightness to your finished bread. Lightly whisk the egg and buttermilk together. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and pour in most of the egg and buttermilk at once. Using one hand, with your fingers stiff and outstretched (like a claw!), stir in a full circular movement from the centre to the outside of the bowl in ever-increasing circles, adding a little more buttermilk if necessary. The dough should be softish, not too wet and sticky.

3. The trick with white soda bread is not to over-mix the dough. Mix it as quickly and as gently as possible, thus keeping it light and airy. When the dough all comes together, turn it out onto a rice-floured work surface.

4. Wash and dry your hands. With rice-floured fingers, roll lightly for a few seconds - just enough to tidy it up. Pat the dough into a round, pressing it to about 5cm/2in in height.

5. Place the dough on a baking tray dusted lightly with rice flour. With a sharp knife cut a deep cross in it, letting the cuts go over the sides of the bread. Prick with a knife at four angles which, according to Irish folklore, is to let the fairies out!

6. Bake in the oven for five minutes, then reduce the temperature to 180C/350F/Gas 4 for a further 25-30 minutes or until cooked. If in doubt, tap the bottom of the bread. If it is cooked, it will sound hollow. Cool on a wire rack.

7. Serve freshly baked, cut into thick slices and smeared with butter and homemade jam.


Spotted Dog: This is called railway cake in some parts of Ireland: 'a currant for each station'.Follow the master recipe, adding 110g/4oz sultanas to the dry ingredients. Serve with butter and raspberry jam. It's also delicious eaten with cheese.


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