Hungry Writer Bakes Bread

Soda bread 3

This morning we had run out of bread so I decided to run up a super swift loaf of soda bread. It’s a recipe I’ve been doing for years as it’s very useful for emergencies but it’s also good for a special treat like freshly baked bread with smoked salmon and scrambled eggs, which we had on Christmas Day. It’s delicious too still warm dripping with butter, or with butter, jam or marmalade.

It was seven o’clock. I was still in my dressing gown and all set to go. I went into my office and pulled out the file with the recipe. It wasn’t there. At first I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. That recipe is always there. It’s the first thing you see when you open the folder. I rifled through page after page, thinking I must in a moment of aberration mis-filed the recipe, but I still couldn’t find it. Then I tried my other recipe file. Still no joy.

Time was ticking on, so I resorted to the Google solution. Scrolling down countless variations I managed to cobble together something I thought was similar.

Then I took a deep breath “You know how to do this” I told myself and the memory began to return. I was a little hazy on the actual quantity of flour but the proportions were right and the bread worked perfectly.

Rather like writing, I had to trust that I could do it, then I could. Something to remember when those moments of doubt strike.

cover version 16Now back to marketing and promoting, “Belvedere Crescent”

In the meantime if you need a quick and easy fix when you run out of bread.


500g of wholemeal bread flour. Or a mix of brown and white.

400g Buttermilk. Kefir works wonderfully well.

1 tsp of salt

1 tsp golden castor sugar

2 tsp bicarbonate of soda.


Preheat oven to 230c/Fan 210

Place flour, sugar and salt in large mixing bowl. Stir in the bicarb and then the buttermilk. Bring together to give a soft dough, fold over once or twice, until smooth but don’t over knead as you need to keep in as much air as possible.

Turn the dough onto a greased baking tray and shape into a round 4cm deep. Cut a deep cross in the centre to divide into 4 without cutting all the way through. Dust with a little extra flour.

Bake immediately for 15min. Reduce oven tem to 200/180fan and bake for another 30 min until the bread in golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped underneath.


PS discovered that you can re-use silicon baking paper. Rather like using the same idea only in a different format. There are after all only 7 basic stories in the world. Or so they say.



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