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The secret ingredient for a fabulous Irish Soda Bread

When I was a kid my mother would get us Irish Soda Bread once a year from the local bakery. It had raisins and caraway seeds in it. I thought it was a cross between raisin bread and rye bread. Simply put, I thought it was gross!

As an adult, I have a friend that makes Irish Soda Bread for me as a gift every year. When I couldn’t see her during the height of the pandemic, I decided to try making her recipe. No matter what I did, it just never turned out right.

It is a hobby of mine to cook and tweak recipes to my personal taste and proportions. So I started playing around with different versions of Irish Soda Bread. One day, I stumbled upon Ina Garten’s Barefoot Contessa Irish Soda Bread Recipe. It did not call for raisins or caraway seeds so I was intrigued and tried making it. I followed the instructions to a tee which included her secret ingredient: orange zest,  and it turned out “fabulous” as she would say! Her recipes truly are foolproof.

Wishing everyone a Happy St. Patrick’s Day!