Soda Bread with Raisins is Warm and Delicious on a Snowy Winter Morning!

042soda bread with raisins

046soda bread with raisins

This delicious bread is so simple to make that I can find no reason not to make a fresh loaf every morning!

There is nothing better than waking up on a snowy winter morning to the smell of bread baking in the oven.

034soda bread with raisins

This slightly sweet, crumbly quick bread worked well with 2 cups of whole wheat pastry flour and 1 cup baking flour.

I also used turbinado in the place of granulated white sugar.

037soda bread with raisins

Ingredients

Raisin Soda Bread

3 cups (390 grams) all-purpose flour (or 1 1/2 cups (195 grams) whole wheat flour and 1 1/2 cups (195 grams) all purpose flour)

3 tablespoons (40 grams) granulated white sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons (42 grams) cold unsalted butter, cut in small pieces

3/4 cup (100 grams) Thompson raisins

1 1/2 cups (360 ml) buttermilk (soured milk)

Method

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) and place the rack in the center of the oven. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Cut the cold butter into small pieces and blend into the flour mixture, with a pastry blender or two knives, until the mixture looks like coarse crumbs. Stir in the raisins. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and add most of the buttermilk. Using yours hands, or a wooden spoon, mix (adding more buttermilk if necessary) until you have a soft moist dough.

Transfer to a lightly floured surface and gently knead the dough into a 7 inch (18 cm) round. Place the round on your prepared baking sheet and then, with a sharp knife, cut a 1/4 inch deep “X” across the top of the bread.

Bake for about 40 – 50 minutes or until nicely browned and a toothpick inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean. You can also test that is fully baked by tapping the bottom of the bread – it should sound hollow. Remove from oven. This bread is wonderful when served warm with butter. It also makes great toast.

Makes one seven inch (18 cm) round raisin soda bread.

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The dough hook on my Kitchen Aid mixer makes this a peice of cake!

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I always use parchment paper.

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This recipe is so quick and easy.

You can have warm bread in less than an hour!

What a great last minute surprise for breakfast.

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Cold butter on warm bread is a special treat!

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What is especially nice is that you can usually find most of these ingredients in your pantry at all times.

No buttermilk? Add lemon juice to milk!

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No raisins? Use dried cranberries or prunes.

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…even chocolate chips would work nicely and the kids will love it!

040soda bread with raisins

  

Sunshine and Oatmeal Raisin Cookies!

Oatmeal Raisin cookies PD

It was one of those mornings today; the Midwest in the middle of winter, early and I was outside with the dog.

The sun was shining and it was in the mid 30’s and I got a whiff of something that I hadn’t smelled in a long time. It was the smell of wet earth and green stuff; life just below the surface.

It caught me short.

I could hear birds.

It absolutely rejuvenated me.

This winter will not last forever, we will feel the sun on our faces again and there will be smells.

Baking oatmeal raisin cookies seemed the natural thing to do; chocolate chip, too.

The girls would come home from school to a house filled with the smell of freshly baked cookies and when they forgot to shut the back door I let it stay that way for a little while; the sun streaming in, just like it was Springtime or something.

007Oatmeal Raisin Cookies PD

Ingredients:

½ pound (2 sticks butter)
1 Cup firmly packed brown sugar
½ Cup granulated sugar
2 Eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla (the best that you can afford, it makes a difference)
1-1/2 Cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon salt
3 Cups of rolled oats
1 Cup of raisins

Method:

Heat oven to 350F
Beat together butter and sugars until creamy
Add eggs and vanilla, mix well
Add the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt; mix
Add the rolled oats and raisins and continue to mix
Place rounded tablespoons full on cookie sheets and bake for 10-12 minutes.
Makes about 4 dozen
Enjoy!

004Oatmeal Raisin Cookies PD

  

I Can Be Cheap and Easy!

001oatmeal, almonds, cocnut and raisinsPD

The frosty temperatures inspire a warm breakfast.

I have been doing my grocery shopping at a local market which features organic and specialty: vegetarian, vegan, bulk, local and whole foods.

That these are specialty items is another issue. In any case, let’s focus on the bulk part.

Being able to buy food in bulk is not only cost effective but it also helps me to maintain a supply of whole unprocessed foods at all times.

This morning only oatmeal could warm my bones. All of the ingredients are wholesome and organic and truly easy to turn into a great breakfast.

I usually cook a whole cup of steel cut oats and eat about 2/3 of a cup and store the rest in the fridge for the week. By the way, 1 cup of uncooked oats yealds about 4, 2/3 cup servings.

Sometimes I throw in a banana but today it was almonds, coconut and raisins.

Tip: a banana makes a nice substitute for milk and sugar. I will also add 1 Tbsp of coconut milk to replace milk.

Ingredients

Cook: 1 cup steel cut oats in 4 cups of water:

add 1/2 tsp salt and 1 tsp vanilla

That’s it for the oatmeal, then add any topping you like.

raisins

shredded coconut

1 Tbsp coconut milk

1/4 cup almonds

cinnamon and nutmeg to taste

Enjoy!

  

Carrot Cake and Company

carrot cake pd nice

The cold winds are blowing and coffee and carrot cake is the only remedy.
This tastes best after a long walk in the chill autumn air.
It’s so cozy and yummy and feels like Fall to me.
I added a little yogurt and butter to make it extra moist and have been enjoying this all week.

Ingredients

1 ½ cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
3 cups shredded carrots
1 cup coarsely chopped nuts
½ cup raisins

Cream cheese frosting

1 package cream cheese
1 cup powdered sugar
enough milk to soften

Method

Heat oven to 350 fahrenheit
Grease and flour 2 loaf pans.
Mix sugar, oil and eggs until well blended. Beat for 1 minute
Stir in remaining ingredients except carrots, nuts and raisins.
Beat 1 minute then stir in remaining ingredients

Bake 35-45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean

Frost with cream cheese frosting if you’d like

  

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