Sunday, March 17, 2013

Irish Soda Bread on St Patrick's Day

 On St Patrick's Day, everyone wants to be Irish!  But only some of us are lucky enough to actually have Irish blood in us.  I am one of those lucky people...I am proud to be one quarter Irish!  My great grandma Margaret Ryan came over from Ireland at the age of 16 to be an indentured servant.  She came through Ellis Island and made the trip across the US to Seattle, Washington.  There, she met the love of her life, an Irish man named Raymond Kealy.  Together, they raised 5 children.  I don't have any memories of my great grandpa, but I have many of my great grandma.
 Every time we would go to Seattle to visit, she would always make Irish Soda Bread.  She didn't use a recipe.  She had made it so many times that she didn't need a recipe since it was all in her head.  After the soda bread was all baked and cooled, we would go into the dining room.  There, we would eat a thick, crusty slice of soda bread slathered in creamy butter and dusted with a little bit of sugar.  To accompany our soda bread, we always had tea.  Grandma would tell us stories about growing up in Ireland as well as some of her favorite Irish lore and legends.  Grandma has only been gone for about 9 years now, but I wish I could go back in time to eat some more of her bread and listen to  more of her stories.
 Today I decided that in honor of my grandma and in celebration of St Patrick's Day, I would make some Irish Soda Bread.  I hadn't had any in years so I was really looking forward to tasting it again.  I did it just like grandma would have-slathered it in butter and sprinkled it with sugar.  I even made some tea to drink along with it.  It is not even close to being as delicious as grandma's, but I figure I can keep practicing!  It was Cody's first time trying it as well and I think he liked it.  My favorite part is still the plump, juicy raisins that you randomly bite into!
The tea set that I used belonged to my great grandma and was perfect to use with such a special treat.  It dates back to at least the 1950's and is one of my favorite family heirlooms.  I am so glad that I have some Irish in me but I am even more thankful that I got to know my great grandma, taste her soda bread and hear her wonderful stories!  Happy St Patrick's Day to you all!


Unknown said...

Girl that is such a heartwarming story!!! Your bread looks absolutely delicious, I know your great gram was smiling down on you as you made it! :)


NanaDiana said...

What a wonderful memory of your grandmother...and her Irish soda bread. My Mom used to butter and sugar my bread, too. What a sweet post- xo Diana

Chenille Cottage said...

Happy St. Patty's Day, Trisha,
Oh...My mouth is watering. Your soda bread looks so good. I can only imagine how good it smelled coming out of the oven.
Thank you for your sweet comment on my blog. How I would love to host each and every one of my blogging pals.
Blessings to you,
Carolynn xoxo

June said...

I loved this post Trisha. Your soda bread looks so yummy! Both my husband and I are of Irish descent and pretty proud of it too :) I hope you have been enjoying some of the beautiful spring weather you guys have been getting.
hugs from here...

Donna said...

Trisha, thank you so much for your kind words regarding Mr. J. I'm still waiting to hear something!

I've only made Irish Soda Bread once! And I'm half Irish. Shame on me!