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Makes 1 loaf

There’s nothing more satisfying than making your own bread – but there’s nothing more frustrating than having to wait around the house all day while your yeast lazily does its thing. Luckily, if you want the satisfaction of baking up your own loaf without the hassle of having to diarise it well in advance, there is an answer.

Soda bread is a super-simple bread that can be rustled up in under 45 minutes . Thanks to the CO2-producing reaction of buttermilk and bicarb, it rises without the involvement of yeast, making it ideal for weekend breakfasts or as quick and easy companion to soup.

This version comes steaming from the kitchen of Malton Cookery School on the fringes of the North York Moors – enjoy!


        • 300g Plain flour                             

        • 1 tsp Baking powder                   

        • 1 tsp Bicarbonate of soda           

        • 1 tsp Salt                                        

        • 300g Buttermilk

        • A handful of seeds (sunflower, pumpkin, sesame, poppy, etc)


  1. Set the oven to 200ºC / 180ºC fan / gas mark 6.

  2. Place the flour and bicarb with the baking powder in the bowl. Add the salt, pour on ¾ of the buttermilk and mix to a thick dough. Add the rest of the buttermilk if the mixture is very dry. It should be thick enough to form a dome on the baking mat but not so dry that there are flour pockets.

  3. Top with seeds and bake in oven for 15 minutes, then reduce temperature to 160 / 14ºC fan / gas mark 3 for a further 15 minutes. Check the bread is cooked by knocking the base – it should sound hollow.

  4. Allow to cool and enjoy sliced with plenty of butter and jam – this loaf should easily feed four people.