So I know you've probably seen a hundred Irish soda bread recipes before and they're popping up all over your feeds lately with St. Patrick's Day coming up, but don't turn away quite yet - this one's different, I swear!
First of all, this recipe only feeds two people (or four if you like sharing, but you probably won't want to share these).
Second, these are vegan if you use almond milk like I did (though I've also tried it with dairy, which works too), and they use half whole-wheat flour, so they have some nutritious quality to them!
Third, they're ridiculously easy to make! I know that's true of most soda breads because the whole point is that you use baking soda as your leavening agent instead of waiting for yeast to rise, but these are even easier and so much faster than a regular loaf because they're mini-sized. So while an average soda bread needs to bake for about 45 minutes, these only take 15 minutes to bake (and only 5-10 minutes to make)!
Convinced? Good - then read on!
The first time I made these was actually not for St. Patrick's Day at all but because I had absolutely nothing to eat for breakfast one morning. For some reason, I recalled that Irish soda bread is pretty easy to make, so I found a recipe for mini versions then reworked it to feed only two people and use ingredients I had on hand (aka not buttermilk).
I didn't have high hopes for these at the time because I was just desperate for something to spread peanut butter on and fill my empty stomach, but I absolutely loved them!
These are perfectly crunchy and golden on the outside, and soft and dense on the inside, with a hearty texture and flavour from the addition of whole wheat flour. They make a great base for peanut butter or jam in the morning, but would also work as a side for your dinner with a little pat of butter!
If you've seen a hundred soda bread recipes but have never actually tried it yourself, you really have to give this a try - it's so easy, takes no time at all, won't give you leftovers to deal with, and is "in season" for St. Paddy's, so there are no excuses!
Mini Irish Soda Breads for Two
Adapted from Baking Bites
Makes 2 biscuit-sized soda breads
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons milk – almond milk or dairy milk both work
1/2 tablespoon vinegar
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 tablespoon sugar
Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Combine milk and vinegar in a small bowl or measuring cup, stir, and let sit for about 5 minutes until milk thickens slightly.
Whisk together the two flours, salt, baking soda, and sugar in a large bowl. Form a well in the middle and pour the milk mixture into the center. Stir together with a wooden spoon or flexible spatula just until combined. Dough will be sticky.
Divide dough in half and drop each half onto the prepared baking sheet. Wet your hands and shape each dough into a circle if necessary. Cut an ‘x’ shape into the top of each ball of dough, cutting about halfway into the dough. Bake for about 15 minutes in preheated oven, until golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool slightly before eating. Serve with peanut butter, jam, butter, or your favourite spread.