Teamwork. Communication. Accuracy. Math. Googy-grossness. Coordination. Critical Thinking. Fun. What better way to wrap all that up into one package than to bake something?
I’ll tell you, none. Every other year with my Cub Scouts, I love to do some baking with them. Specifically, Irish Soda bread for St. Patricks day. Why? Well, it’s pretty much fool proof and the Cubs can successfully make a loaf in the span of one meeting.
Last year I had to get creative and use a cardboard box oven to bake the bread in. Aside from needing another 5 minutes to finish baking the centre, it was a giant hit. Parents were most impressed that their youth (in teams) did 95% of the work. The Scouters main task was to make sure everyone had a chance and that the bread made it into the oven on time.
Irish Soda Bread
Prep: 20 Minutes for Cubs
Baking: 50 Minutes
Total: 1 hour 10 minutes
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 4 tablespoons white sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup margarine, softened
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup butter, melted
- 1/4 cup buttermilk
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Lightly grease a large baking sheet.
- In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and margarine. Stir in 1 cup of buttermilk and egg. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead slightly. Form dough into a round and place on prepared baking sheet. In a small bowl, combine melted butter with 1/4 cup buttermilk; brush loaf with this mixture. Use a sharp knife to cut an ‘X’ into the top of the loaf.
- Bake in preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes. Check for done-ness after 30 minutes. You may continue to brush the loaf with the butter mixture while it bakes.
- Enjoy with jam or butter while warm.