It just hit me yesterday that St. Patrick's Day is on Tuesday. Every year I make a version of vegan Irish soda bread in celebration of our Irish roots. Irish soda bread is like a giant scone to me and I love it with my morning tea. We had some homemade maple citrus marmalade and homemade soy labneh in the fridge to top the soda bread with this morning. Labneh is so useful! Here it replaces clotted cream and is so good dolloped over the sweet marmalade and crumbly soda bread.
Since I've cut back on gluten and processed wheat recently I decided to dip my toes back into baking by using ancient grains like spelt and einkorn, both of which are heirloom wheat grains. These heirloom varieties have not been manipulated over the centuries to increase their gluten as commercial wheat has been. They still contain gluten but their internal makeup is the same as that of the wheat our ancestors ate way back when.
What's in Vegan Irish Soda Bread
Traditional Irish soda bread is made with buttermilk, which I've replaced with coconut milk mixed with a little apple cider vinegar. It's thick and creamy and the vinegar gives it a tangy taste like that of buttermilk.
This spelt version is a bit denser than last years version, which was made with a mixture of white and whole wheat flour. The coconut "buttermilk" ups the richness factor and makes up for the slightly more dense texture. I suggest using coconut milk no matter which flours you end up choosing for your loaves.
Happy Saint Patrick's Day!
Vegan Irish Spelt Soda Bread
- 1 ½ cups coconut milk
- ⅓ cup apple cider vinegar
- 3 cups spelt flour plus more for dusting
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 ¼ teaspoons baking soda
- pinch of sea salt optional
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- ½ cup unprocessed wheat bran
- ¼ cup caraway seeds
- 1 cup dried currants
- Preheat oven to 350˚F with rack in middle.
- Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Stir coconut milk and vinegar together, and let stand until thickened, about 5 min.
- Whisk together spelt flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda in large bowl. Cut in olive oil using your hands until mixture resembles a coarse meal. Add bran, caraway seeds and currants and stir to distribute.
- Pour thickened coconut milk mixture into flour mixture and stir until dough just holds together but is still sticky. Divide dough in half. Turn half of dough onto lightly floured surface. Pat and press the dough gently into a round, dome-shaped loaf. Repeat with remaining dough.
- Dust loaves with flour and transfer to prepared sheet. Cut an X into the top of each loaf. Bake, rotating sheet halfway through, until they are golden brown, about 1 hour. Tester should come out clean. Enjoy!