Most authentic Irish soda breads are whole wheat, but combinations of half white and half whole wheat or white whole wheat still make for a good loaf. As with anything else, a larger proportion of white flour will give an airier and higher loaf. All whole wheat will give you a more rustic, nutty loaf.
Don’t use green beer in this. A robust stout, beer or ale will lend a hearty jolt. Serve with a piping hot plate of Irish stew.
From the story: The Soda Bread Variations
Stir together whole-wheat and unbleached flours, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder and caraway seeds. Make well in center and stir in egg and butter. Stir in beer. Stir by hand to make soft batter. Stir in raisins. Spoon into greased 9-inch round cake pan. Sprinkle with bran or oatmeal.
Bake at 375 degrees until top is dry to touch, 40 to 45 minutes. Top will be slightly cracked. Remove from oven and cool before serving.
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