Soda bread is perhaps the easiest introduction to the world of bread making, as it requires no kneading, and no lengthy proving. In fact, all the leavening is given to the bread by the baking soda that gives the bread its name. Simply mix everything together, shape, and bake. In fact, this loaf can be on your table and ready to eat in under an hour!
This Stilton and walnut loaf is inspired by the autumnal weather outside my window, that makes me want to grab a big bowl of soup and some hearty bread to dunk into it. The earthy cheese and nut flavours are like a big hug from inside! The spelt flour definitely adds to that nutty quality, but if you can only get your hands on plain flour, you can simply substitute it directly.
If you are not able to source Stilton where you live, you can use any other strong blue cheese, like Roquefort.
Stilton and Walnut Soda Bread
- 200 g plain flour
- 200 g spelt flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 75 g walnuts
- 75 g blue cheese
- 300 ml buttermilk
- Preheat the oven to 180c / 160c fan.
- Place the flours, salt, and baking soda into a bowl, and whisk together.
- Coarsely chop the walnuts and add to the flour, then set aside.
- Crumble the blue cheese into a small bowl, and work into a paste with a splash of the buttermilk.
- Keep adding the buttermilk a little at a time, in an effort to make a creamy sauce.
- Some lumps are inevitable, but make it as smooth as you can.
- Scrape the buttermilk mixture into the flour, and fold together.
- When everything is evenly mixed, move the dough to a lined baking sheet.
- Use well-floured hands to shape into a ball as best you can.
- Cut a deep cross into the soda bread, that cuts about halfway down.
- Bake for 30 minutes, then move to a wire rack to cool completely.