Bacon, Chive and Cheese Soda Bread

So I totally missed St Patrick’s Day! As the wife of an Irishman, I’m sure there is some law about this! It’s not that I don’t LOVE St Patrick’s Day, but with both of us really busy with work these past few weeks as well as the usual life stuff, we both clearly just forgot. I even tried to scoot around after work and pick up some Irish cider for dinner but it was all sold out. It was a total failure. Anyway, moving on. I hope you had a cracking St Patrick’s day. We’ll be making up for it next year, but in the meantime, we’ve been snacking on this bacon, chive and cheese soda bread which is delicious any day of the year.

Soda Bread is the ultimate quick bread. A time-poor mum’s Sunday morning savior when she hasn’t got a loaf of sourdough on the go. In under an hour, this savory soda bread will save your bacon (pardon the pun!) and give you a delicious, yet totally easy to bake, loaf of bread for the Sunday table.

a loaf of bacon, chive and cheese bread in a cast iron frypan just out of the oven  on a floured table.

Why you are going to love this easy cheese and bacon bread

Where do I start? Ok, firstly this bacon and cheddar soda bread is super easy to make. Soda bread is the biggest bread cheat. No proving, kneading, or much effort and you’ll be eating a loaf straight out of the oven in under an hour!

It totally lends itself to every meal of the day. Think about it. Breakfast, with ham and eggs and beans. For lunch, make it into the best toastie ever or serve it alongside a hearty soup. And what about with a good stew or pasta for dinner? See, I told you. EVERY MEAL OF THE DAY.

What you need to get started

  • Pantry staples – plain flour, seas salt flakes, baking soda
  • Fresh chives
  • Cheddar cheese – I use Warnambool Vintage Cheddar for this recipe but as long as it’s a sharp vintage cheddar, it will work. Bonus points if it’s an Irish cheddar!
  • Streaky bacon – cut into a rough 1cm sq dice.
  • Honey
  • Buttermilk – if you can’t get your hands on buttermilk you can easily make it by combining 1 cup milk with 1 tbsp lemon juice. leave for a couple of minutes until it curdles and you’ve got buttermilk!

The equipment

A baking tray, a wooden spoon, measuring spoons, and a mixing bowl. That’s it! Talk about no-fuss. I usually bake a savory soda bread on baking paper which is then placed in a cast-iron frypan, however, this is totally optional. I just love baking in cast iron. It gives such a beautiful, crusty base to any loaf.

The details

  1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees celcius.
  2. Combine all the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Pop aside.
  3. In a frypan on a medium heat, fry off the bacon bits until browned and slighly crispy on the ends (about 5 minutes)
  4. Add the bacon to the bowl of dry ingredients. Add grated cheddar and chopped chives. Combine.
  5. In a small bowl add the honey to the buttermilk and give a good stir. 
  6. Add the buttermilk mixture to the mixing bowl with other ingredients. Stir just to combine, but no more. The mixture should be quite wet. This is completely normal. 
  7. Form the dough into a rough ball and pop onto a piece of baking paper on a baking tray (or like I do, into a cast iron frypan). Using the back of a wet spoon, gently smooth over the surface to guide it into a round, bread dough. Score the top of the dough with a large X.
  8. Pop into the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes. 

How do I serve soda bread?

In this house, my bacon, chive, and cheese soda bread is served just out of the oven, with a side of poached eggs, avocado, and bacon for breakfast or simply slathered in butter all day long. It also is delicious alongside a big bowl of soup or Irish stew in the cooler months.

Soda bread is best eaten on the day of baking, However, I love toasting it the next morning for breakfast too!

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a load of bacon, chive and cheese soda bread in a black cast iron frypan on a floured surface

Bacon, Chive and Cheese Soda Bread

  • Author: Emma Lee
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 40
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 1 loaf 1x
  • Category: Bread
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: Irish

Description

Soda Bread… The ultimate quick bread. A time-poor mum’s Sunday morning savior when she hasn’t got a loaf of sourdough on the go. In under an hour, this savory soda bread will save your bacon (pardon the pun!) and give you a delicious, yet totally easy to bake, loaf of bread for the Sunday table.


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 350g plain flour
  • 1 tsp salt flakes
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3 tsp chopped chives
  • 120g cheddar, coarsely grated
  • 170g streaky bacon, cut into a rough 1cm sq dice.
  • 300ml buttermilk
  • 1 tbsp honey

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees celcius.
  2. Combine all the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Pop aside.
  3. In a frypan on a medium heat, fry off the bacon bits until browned and slighly crispy on the ends (about 5 minutes)
  4. Add the bacon to the bowl of dry ingredients. Add grated cheddar and chopped chives. Combine.
  5. In a small bowl add the honey to the buttermilk and give a good stir. 
  6. Add the buttermilk mixture to the mixing bowl with other ingredients. Stir just to combine, but no more. The mixture should be quite wet. This is completely normal. 
  7. Form the dough into a rough ball and pop onto a piece of baking paper on a baking tray (or like I do, into a cast iron frypan). Using the back of a wet spoon, gently smooth over the surface to guide it into a round, bread dough. Score the top of the dough with a large X.
  8. Pop into the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes. 


Keywords: Soda bread, Irish food

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