Homemade Irish Soda Bread is a quick-bake bread with no yeast, which makes it a dense bread, yet it’s still very light and airy. Soaking the slices in an egg mixture and pan-frying them in butter makes for a deliciously wonderful St. Patrick’s Day breakfast! You have got to try this Irish Soda Bread French Toast; you will not be disappointed!
Every March I will make a loaf or two of my Irish Soda Bread. It is super fast and easy to make, so there is really no reason to not make your own rather than buy it from your local grocery store. Since the bread is really crusty on the outside and soft and moist on the inside, I like to serve it with soup. It is also really good toasted with lots of butter, but today, I want to show you how to make Irish Soda Bread French Toast! Make it for breakfast, brunch or even dinner!
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We often have breakfast for dinner. In fact, we have it at least once a week. Usually, this meal consists of scrambled eggs, toast, and beans. It is almost always served at our home for dinner on Wednesday night. We refer to it as College Dinner.
One of my best friends, Margaret, also serves her family of six her version of College Dinner about once a week. It certainly does take the difficulty out of deciding what to have for dinner – especially on a weeknight! And, who doesn’t love breakfast food for dinner anyway? Those greasy diners are in on it! Most of them serve breakfast all day long!
IRISH SODA BREAD
I’ve made this bread a few times and it always turns out perfectly. I’m just not sure why I only ever make it around St. Patrick’s Day. Maybe it’s because it’s Irish. Maybe it’s because soda bread is a non-spoken requirement for all bloggers during this time of year.
If you’re new to baking bread, you should certainly start with this one! There are a few reasons why. First, there are very few ingredients. Second, those ingredients are cheap. And, third, you can practice your kneading skills.
Irish Soda bread consists of only five ingredients. You’ll need flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and buttermilk. Now, in most homes, the only ingredient you’ll need to buy is buttermilk. Most homes will already have the other ingredients in the pantry.
ADDING INGREDIENTS TO SODA BREAD
The great thing about soda bread is that you can add things to it. The recipe used in this Irish Soda Bread French Toast is a basic version, which is a great place to start. I’d certainly go the plain route if you plan to serve the bread with soup – keep it simple!
You can add raisins or currants to the bread. I’ve seen this bread with nuts and seeds mixed in. I’ve also seen it with candied fruit, dried ginger, and even fresh orange zest.
If you plan to add anything, keep the amounts low. For a recipe like mine, I would not add more than a half cup of add-ins. If you add too much, there won’t be enough “bread” to hold the add-ins together!
Lord Byron’s Notes
Try adding a half cup of raisins and a half teaspoon of ground cinnamon to your bread dough to make a Cinnamon Raisin Irish Soda Bread. That would be a delight made into French Toast!
INGREDIENTS NEEDED FOR THIS RECIPE
The following is a list of the ingredients needed to prepare this recipe. For exact amounts and measurements, refer to the printable recipe card located near the bottom of this post.
Ingredients for the Bread:
- Flour – No need for anything special. Just use regular all-purpose flour. I have not tried this recipe with any other type of flour.
- Sugar – Sugar will caramelize when baked, which will help to brown cookies and cakes.
- Baking Soda – Commonly known as sodium bicarbonate, or just bicarb, it is a baking ingredient that’s activated by a liquid and an acid to help with leavening or rising. In most cases, you will see baking soda in recipes with lemon juice or buttermilk, but that’s not always the case.
- Salt – This is a common ingredient in baking and cooking. In baking, it helps to enhance and balance the sweetness.
- Buttermilk – Store-bought is best for this recipe because it’s already much thicker than homemade, but this recipe will work with homemade buttermilk too. I find that store-bought has a more authentic buttermilk flavour.
Ingredients for Making the French Toast:
- Milk – Whenever I cook or bake with milk, I always use whole milk.
- Cinnamon – Cinnamon is a spice created from the inner bark of the Cinnamomum tree. The bark is dried until it curls into a roll known as a cinnamon stick. These are ground into powder. Commonly found in baked goods, cinnamon is aromatic with a warming flavour.
- Nutmeg – Nutmeg is a seed that comes in whole or ground form. It is a key ingredient in many baked goods and is essential to anything eggnog related. I often use it in fall dishes, especially in mashed potatoes!
- Vanilla Extract – This recipe is for sweet French Toast, so vanilla extract works very well! I love a savoury French Toast too, in which case I do not add the extract.
- Butter – Soda bread has salt, so please use unsalted butter here.
HOW TO MAKE IRISH SODA BREAD FRENCH TOAST
Let’s make the Irish Soda Bread first!
Start by preheating your oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking soda, and sugar. Pour in the buttermilk and stir together with a fork until the buttermilk has been absorbed into the flour mixture.
Transfer to a lightly floured surface. Knead together to form a rustic oval shape. Do not need more than 30 seconds! Place the oval on a baking sheet and score the top of the loaf with a sharp knife. Bake for 40 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 30 minutes before slicing into half-inch slices.
Prepare the Egg Mixture
Next, add the eggs to a shallow dish, much like a pie plate, which will give you lots of room to soak the bread. Whisk the eggs and then add in the milk and vanilla extract. Whisk to combine. Finally, whisk in the cinnamon and nutmeg.
Let’s make Irish Soda Bread French Toast!
Place two or three slices of bread into the pie plate – or however many you can fit comfortably. Soak the bread for a minute or two on each side. While the bread is soaking, preheat a large skillet over medium-low heat and melt one tablespoon of butter in the pan. Transfer the egg-soaked bread to the skillet. Don’t overcrowd the pan! In my largest skillet, I can fry four slices at a time.
Lord Byron’s Notes
If you are frying the French Toast in batches, you will need to keep the batches warm. Preheat your oven to 175 degrees F and place the fried soda bread onto a baking sheet and set it in the warm oven.
Fry the slices for 4-5 minutes on each side. If you want to fry them for longer, you can, but don’t fry them any less than that, because the egg mixture that the bread soaked up may not be cooked all the way through. Once the slices have been fried, remove them from the pan and fry the next batch. Add a tablespoon of unsalted butter to the skillet between each batch.
Once all of the soda bread has been fried, serve the French Toast with lots of maple syrup and fresh berries. It’s so yummy! Enjoy!
WHAT TO SERVE WITH IRISH SODA FRENCH TOAST
I can’t imagine having French Toast without maple syrup! Maple syrup is one of those things where John.e and I disagree. He prefers real maple syrup, but I prefer artificial stuff. Whenever I include maple in my recipes though, I always use real maple syrup. (I save my fake, cheap stuff for myself!) I know Pearl Milling Company Original Syrup is not authentic maple syrup, but it has maple flavour and I love the thickness of it! You can use the maple syrup right out of the bottle, or you can warm it up gently in a saucepan over low heat.
Berries are a must for me with French Toast! I love strawberries and blueberries. They are my favourites, but raspberries, blackberries, and fresh currants would be wonderful too. I’m not a huge fan of whipped cream on pancakes or waffles, and the same applies to French Toast. But, I know it is a favourite topping with many, so go ahead and add a dollop of whipped cream too if you wish.
You can make this a heartier breakfast or brunch with some fried bacon on the side! Speaking of sides, you can serve this with plain Greek yogurt that has been sweetened with honey or maple syrup too. I would even consider adding a sprinkling of granola over the French Toast to give it a crunch! I have to stop writing now because I’m making myself hungry all over again! You enjoy this, Dear Reader, and have a great St. Patrick’s Day!
Do You Like This Recipe?
You should consider trying these other delicious recipes too!
Irish Soda Bread French Toast
For the Bread:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup buttermilk, plus one tablespoon
For the French Toast:
- 4 large eggs
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
For the Bread:
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking soda, and sugar.
- Pour in the buttermilk and stir together with a fork until buttermilk has been absorbed into the flour mixture.
- Transfer to a lightly floured surface. Knead together to form a rustic oval shape. Do not need more than 30 seconds!
- Place the oval on the baking sheet and score the top of the loaf with a sharp knife. Bake for 40 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 30 minutes before slicing into half inch slices.
For the French Toast:
- Next, add the eggs to a shallow dish, much like a pie plate, which will give you lots of room to soak the bread. Whisk the eggs and then add in the milk and vanilla extract. Whisk to combine. Finally, whisk in the cinnamon and nutmeg.
- Place two or three slices of bread into the pie plate – or however many you can fit comfortably.
- Soak the bread for a minute or two on each side.
- While the bread is soaking, preheat a large skillet over medium-low heat and melt one tablespoon of butter in the pan.
- Transfer the egg-soaked bread to the skillet. Don’t overcrowd the pan!
- Fry the slices for 4-5 minutes on each side. Once the slices have been fried, remove them from the pan and fry the next batch. Add a tablespoon of unsalted butter to the skillet between each batch.
- Once all of the soda bread has been fried, serve the French Toast with lots of maple syrup and fresh berries. Enjoy!
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