Thursday, March 17, 2011

Irish Soda Bread Muffins

First of all I will like to thank Lena for this award! Really an honor to receive this. It's my first award ever, and I want to thank my papa and my mama and my sista and my smelly puppy.

Here are the rules to abide in order to accept this award and they are:
1. Post linking back to the person that gave you the award
2. Share 7 random things about yourself
3. Award 15 recently discovered blogs
4. Drop them a note and tell them about it.

So here's the randomness:
1. I was an avid gamer. Used to be a hardcore raider in World of Warcraft. It was like my 2nd job. Practically eat and sleep in front of the computer. Then I decided that I needed a life after 2 years, and I tendered resignation to my Raid Leader.
2. Flew to US alone during Winter '08 to meet my American friends. Had the best vacation ever. Road trip to LA, Vegas, SF. While they're at work, I wander around the suburbans by myself, talk to strangers on the streets. That explains why I'm so into American TV and their food.
3. Wanderlust me! Thrilled by the idea of travelling, even to exotic places like India or Peru. Rather backpack by foot than go for packaged tours.
4. One of the proudest moments in my life was completing a full marathon.
5. My weight fluctuates like a woman's pms mood swing. Was at 63kg at my heaviest and 46kg at my lightest.
6. Am furthering my studies this July, because I want to put myself to challenge of time management. Considered doing it overseas but that will put a strain to the pockets, so nope.
7. I like dogs, cats...and virtually all kinds of animals. Feel a lot of sympathy for them. Maybe I'll do up a stray cat blog post soon when I have the time :D

Will like to forward the award to the below lovely bloggers! Sorry if some of you have already received this award before, that's just cos you're simply awesome.
1. Busygran from A Busy Gran's Kitchen
2. Cathy from Cathy's Joy
3. Edith from Precious Moments
4. Jasmine from The Sweetylicious
5. Jess from J3ss kitch3n
6. Jane from Passionate Abt Baking
7. Jo from Sugar & Everything Nice
8. Johnson from I'll Snap That
9. Joyce from Chunky Cooky
10. Nancy from Bake for a Queen
11. Vivienne from Green Cilantro
12. Wen from Wen's Delight
13. Wendy from Table for 2...or more
14. Zoe from Bake for Happy Kids
15. ZY from Baking Library

It's Irish soda bread muffins for St Patrick's Day! It's fun to have a reason to bake something festive for a holiday when it's almost non existent over here haha. The four-leave clover and lotsa lotsa green are considered the most symbolic of this festive holiday.

I was really intrigued by how the original soda bread works. It's a bread, but it does not require any yeast to work. It's made of the simplest ingredients with no add-ins...not even sugar! Probably because of how poor the people were back then, and sugar was a luxury. Now here's a little more fanciful version with butter, sugar and some raisins.

The quick bread portion is tender and isn't as sweet as our usual cake-like muffins. The natural sweetness of raisins makes up for the lack of flavor. Honestly I think they're not much different from normal muffins. Now I'm even more curious to try how the original Irish soda bread tastes like. But I do hope I get some of the said Irish luck eating these muffins!

Irish Soda Bread Muffins (adapted from Nick Malgieri's Modern Baker)
(makes 12 muffins)

280g all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp caraway seeds, optional
113g unsalted butter, melted
1 large egg
300ml buttermilk
105g raisins tossed with 1 tbsp flour

1. Set a rack in the middle level of the oven and preheat to 180°C.
2. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and caraway seeds, if using, in a mixing bowl and stir well to combine.
3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the butter and sugar. Whisk in the egg and half the buttermilk. Use a large rubber spatula to gently stir half the flour mixture into the liquid. Stir in the remaining buttermilk.
4. Stir in the raisins followed by the remaining flour mixture.
5. Divide the batter equally among the cavities in the muffin pan. Bake the muffins until they are well risen and feel firm to the touch, abt 30 mins. Cool the muffins in the pan on a rack.


  1. Lovely cupcake.....and congrats on ur award :)

  2. Yummy muffins! Jean! I can't imagine you @ 76kg! can you kindly teach me how you lost so much weight? I'm not greedy, I only wants to lose 3kg ;P

  3. congrats on the awards girl u deserve it coz u are awesome! thanks for passing the award to me the muffins are divine!

  4. Hi Jean,
    Thanks for passing the award to me. I'm honoured. :) It's so nice to know more about you. You're such an adventurous lady, and very exotic! :) I want to wish you all the best in your pursue to enrich yourself.
    Err, the Irish bread soda muffin looked quite ordinary to me. However, you've baked it beautifully! Love the colour and the cracks on it! :)

  5. it's not a bad idea to have this in muffin sizes and it's nice to know a little at you!

  6. priya: thanks!

    cathy: aiyo u're already so slim, lose somemore become no more le

    jess: eh thanks for spotting the mistake and texting me immediately =x

    Jane: yah actually i was expecting something different myself, then after tasting feel that it's not really that different from ordinary muffins -_-

    lena: same here! you gave me a chance to :P

  7. muffins! bite size and im sure the recipients cant stop eating it! irish soda bread muffins sound so new to me :D
    thanks for passing the award to me and CONGRATS! (:

  8. hey Jean,

    thats some very interesting tidbits from you, and thanks alot for the award. I agree with Jane, you're very adventurous when it comes to baking, at least thats what I feel =]

    I would love to further my studies too.. but will be choose to do probably a baking diploma!

  9. Muffins looks lovely and congratulations on your award.

  10. first time muffins look just gr have a wonderful collection of desserts here ! loved it !

  11. Jasmine: hey congrats to u too! :P

    ZY: cool! probably can start sourcing on the dips available for your subject of interest :)

    umm mymoonah/onlyfish: thanks dears! :D

  12. I have never tried irish soda bread myself. I can see that u have a passion in travel and adventure. And seems like you are very driven in wanting to continue your studies. I am inspired! LOL

  13. I also have never tried irish soda bread before and you have baked them so beautifully in small bite size! :) Hehe...

  14. crustabakes: thanks! have thoughts for furthering ur studies too? :D

    hanushi: thanks!

  15. Ciao, ho iniziato a seguirti perchè il tuo blog è molto bello, mi piace!
    Hello, I started following you because your blog is very nice, I like it!

  16. Congrats Jean for your award and thanks for giving me the award.

    I was going to present you this award too but have not type out the 7 things about myself.

    I can see that we are circulating these awards amongst a few of us because of our friendship.