Sundried tomatoes and cheddar cheese add a punch of flavor to this classic recipe.
450g plain white flour
1 level tsp salt
1 level tsp bread soda (sieved)
50g mature cheddar cheese, coarsely grated.
50g sundried tomatoes, chopped into 1cm strips
Optional: A sprinkle of pine nuts, rosemary, or herbs
Equipment: 2 x 1lb loaf tins, or a baking tray
- Preheat oven to 220°C/425°F/gas 7.
- Sieve the flour, salt and bread soda into a large, wide mixing bowl.
- Add in the grated cheese and sundried tomatoes. Make a well in the centre. Pour most of the milk into the flour.
- Using one hand with the fingers open and stiff, mix in a full circle drawing in the flour from the sides of the bowl, adding more milk if necessary. The dough should be softish, not too wet and sticky. The trick with all soda breads is not to over-mix the dough. Mix the dough as quickly and as gently as possible, keeping it really light and airy.
- When the dough all comes together, either put the mixture into 2 x 1lb loaf tins, lined with baking parchment, OR for a cake shape, turn the dough out onto a well-floured work surface, gently roll the ball of dough around with floury hands for a few seconds, just enough to tidy it up. Then pat it gently into a round, about 5cm / 2in high. Place on a lightly floured baking sheet. With a sharp knife cut a deep cross in it, letting the cuts go over the sides of the bread. Then prick the four triangles with your fork.
- Put into a preheated oven for 10 minutes, then turn the heat down to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6 for a further 25 minutes, or until cooked. When the bread is cooked it will sound hollow when the base is tapped.
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