Wheaten Bread again, or soda bread or brown soda bread. Whatever title you are comfortable with. I am constantly trying new variations of this theme. It’s such easy quick bread to make. It can be made into scones or formed into a loaf. It can be left plain, made sweet or as I have done this time, savoury. The idea came to me one evening when I wanted some tasty bread to accompany dinner. Something quick and easy was the order of the day. I remembered Rachel Allen had made a soda focaccia in a swiss roll tin so I thought I would try my own version. Just perfect as it baked while dinner cooked and we had it warm from the oven. So quick and easy. This is definitely one I will make often. I had some next day for lunch with some strong cheddar. Delicious.


Olive oil
225g/8oz plain flour
225g/8oz wholemeal flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
100g /4 oz parmesan cheese
100g /4oz feta cheese chopped and crumbled slightly
8-10 sun dried tomatoes in olive oil chopped
2 good tablespoons caramelised onions (I make and use Nigella Lawson’s onion mush)
400ml (14 fl oz) Buttermilk

To Top

25g/1oz melted butter
a clove of squished garlic or garlic paste
finely chopped fresh or some dried parsley


Preheat oven to 200. C /180.C Fan/400 F/ gas 6
Brush a Swiss roll tin or baking tray generously with olive oil.
Place the flour and baking soda into a big bowl and add the salt and lots of ground pepper
Stir in the cheese, tomatoes and onion
Make a well in the centre. Pour in most of the buttermilk, and mix until you have a soft dough. Not wet but soft. If you feel it is a bit wet just add a little more flour
Tip out onto a floured surface and roll it out gently to about 35 x 20 cm (14 x 8 in) and transfer it to the oiled tray.
Dimple the surface of the dough with your fingers
Brush the top with the melted butter garlic and parsley mix .
Put it in the oven and cook for about 20 – 25 minutes.
When cooked, it should feel firm in the centre and be golden brown.
Transfer to a wire rack and cool for a couple of minutes, then cut into squares and serve.


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