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Marmalade & Soda Bread

February 2, 2015

With wet and cold weather forecast for most of last week a bit of kitchen therapy was needed. I love soda bread and find it more digestible than yeast-based bread so I try to keep a pot of buttermilk available in my fridge ready to make a loaf.

DSCN3788 I use Delia’s recipe:

375g strong wholemeal flour

75g plain flour

1 level tsp bicarbonate of soda

1 level dessertspoon salt

284ml carton buttermilk mixed with 75ml water

Pre-heat oven to 200 C

Mix all dry ingredients together then make a well and add the liquid. Gradually bring together with your hands thoroughly mixing all the ingredients into a ball. You may need to add a little more flour or if it feels dry add a little more water. Shape the dough into a smooth round and place on a baking sheet then with a sharp knife cut the top a third of the way into the mix and do the same the other way to form a cross. Cook for 40 minutes (I covered the top with foil for the last 10 minutes to prevent it burning). Place on a rack and allow it to cool properly before tucking in.




This recipe came from my late mother-in-law and uses 1 kilo of oranges to 2 kilo of preserving sugar (warmed in a low oven) plus a lemon and 2.5 L of water.

Place a plate in the freezer to test for setting. In a preserving pan simmer the whole oranges and lemon in the water for 1 1/2 hours then lift out saving the water. When cool enough to handle cut the fruit in half and scoop out all the flesh and pips. Put these back in the pan of water and boil for 15 mins to extract the pectin. Strain into a large bowl and discard these bits putting the liquid back into the preserving pan and add the warm sugar stirring until it has completely dissolved. Slice the peel either finely (or chunky if you wish) and add to the pan. Boil rapidly for 15 minutes then test for setting on the ice-cold plate. It took 30 minutes for mine to set and it has been pointed out that it slips off the knife so it’s still a bit runny -I say use a spoon then. This quantity made five kilner jars and has a very good flavour.

My other project was painting a scruffy Victorian mahogany table in Annie Sloan chalk paint French Linen. It has a gorgeous pedestal base plus two drawers sitting in the pretty curvy table top.



On a very brief trip to the allotment to pick parsley and the first purple sprouting broccoli I discovered the cloche that was protecting a row of red cabbage had lifted off one end. Opportunist slugs had tucked into the outer leaves so I brought the main stem home to enjoy the stunning colours in a vase.DSCN3811




8 Comments leave one →
  1. February 2, 2015 10:42 am

    I love soda bread too. I can’t eat most bread because of the yeast but I’m very lucky as my husband makes delicious sourdough breads. He was given a starter that originated from Hart’s Bakery in Bristol. Love the red leaves on display. It’s surprising how attractive vegetables can be. I use them in arrangements quite a bit. Chard looks fab as does cavolo nero. 🙂

  2. February 2, 2015 11:05 am

    Hart’s bakery I love it and really enjoyed her baking course-might have to do another.

  3. February 2, 2015 12:00 pm

    That looks so easy compared to yeast based bread, although I have to admit to using a machine for the latter. Love the table too. I did something similar with an old mahogany dresser a few years back and have never regretted it.

  4. February 2, 2015 2:06 pm

    The good thing about soda bread is you can make it start to finish in a very short time. Yes the table is so pretty and I’ve just waxed it and it’s even prettier.

  5. February 2, 2015 2:26 pm

    I find soda bread more indigestible than yeast, interesting, I wonder why that is. I’ve been baking too; I made crumpets yesterday, something I like and they aren’t available here in Italy.

  6. February 2, 2015 2:57 pm

    Gosh crumpets-those sound challenging -I’ll look at some recipes. It’s certainly the weather for baking bread and cakes.

  7. February 5, 2015 5:06 pm

    I didn’t know about soda bread, might give it a go as yeast based bread does take ages to prove. I haven’t had time to make any marmalade but really should get on with it – I think there might be some seville oranges in the shops still. (Although, knowing me, I’ve probably missed the boat!)

  8. February 5, 2015 5:18 pm

    Well if you have missed the Seville oranges then lime marmalade is very good too.

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