My mother Shelagh’s White Soda Bread with Dulse


May 4, 2017

Generously donated by Prannie Rhatigans from her book Irish Seaweed Kitchen

Dulse was traditionally incorporated into breads and most Irish households bake a version of soda bread, often referred to as “a cake of bread”. My mother, like so many people, bakes bread without measuring anything. She can eyeball the ingredients while chatting and turn out a perfect cake each time. To turn out really good cakes of bread, you have to have a baker’s hand, something akin to a green thumb in gardening. I had to follow her every move to see exactly what amounts she uses and what she does…here it is.


2tsp Dulse Flakes, rehydrated for 10 minutes in a little water, drained well Add To Cart

900g (2lb) plain white flour or white spelt flour

1½ teaspoons bread soda

Pinch of salt

350ml (12fl oz) sour milk or butter milk or yogurt, or a mix of all three

300ml/10fl oz water


Preheat oven 200°C /400°F/Gas 6. Lightly grease and flour a baking tray.

1 Sieve the flour, bread soda and salt into a large bowl.

2 Add the dulse to the jug of combined measured liquids (milk and water).

3 Make a well in the centre of the bowl and gradually pour in the liquids containing the dulse, mixing the dough as quickly and as gently and as little as possible. Use a little more milk or water if necessary.

4 When the dough comes together carefully scrape it onto a baking tray and pat it gently into a round shape. With a sharp knife cut a deep cross in it.

5 Place in the oven and bake for about 45-50 minutes until the crust has browned and it looks cooked. Remove, quickly turn over and tap the base; when perfectly cooked, bread will sound hollow when the base is tapped. Return to the oven for a few more minutes if necessary until cooked fully. Cool on a wire rack.

Cook's Tip: When replacing the bread in the oven for the final few minutes, place it upside down on the tray.