Leek and Thyme Soda Bread (Dairy-Free)

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This time last year, I was in Ireland. I spent two weeks driving around the entire island — eating, drinking, sight-seeing, and drinking. There was a little drinking, too. It was wonderful. (Check out some visual memories of the place below, sigh…)

This May, I’m set squarely in New England where our current spring is also rather wonderful. The birds have been waking us up way early, typically by 4:00AM, thank you very much. And the pollen is profound; all I do is sniffle and scrunch up my nose, like I’m about to sneeze the biggest of all sneezes, every moment of the day.

EB_IRELAND5

There is a perk to all this springy-ness. The market is filled with one of my favorites: alliums — scallions, ramps, leeks, and fresh spring onions. And if I managed to find the time to clean up my garden, I think I’d find mounds of chives already peeking through with fat purple buds about to pop.

Of all of them, I prefer leeks, somewhat hearty and gentle at the same time. Caramelized, leeks get sweet and dark and almost gooey. Some of them crisp up like shoe string fries. I toss all of them into this simple, but certainly not boring, white soda bread. And then I eat up all the bread with creamy (faux) butter and scraggly sea salt.

Leek and Thyme Soda Bread//eatboutique.comLeek and Thyme Soda Bread//eatboutique.com

This makes a rather large loaf, enough to feed a family of four for a week. You could also break it up into quarters and share them with friends and neighbors. Or simply wrap up the entire Leek and Thyme Soda Bread for someone who’ll have sandwiches for a week.

Leek and Thyme Soda Bread//eatboutique.com

Before you go:

** I wrap this bread up in a linen towel and parchment, but I talk about how to wrap a more standard-size loaf in How To Wrap Bread.

** I like Cheddar Bacon Scones, too. Just saying.

** This Rosemary Olive Oil Cake is still rocking my world.

** This Skillet Soda Bread looks wonderful, too.

** I’ve never met a Black-and-White Cookie I didn’t love.

Leek and Thyme Soda Bread//eatboutique.com

Leek and Thyme Soda Bread

Though leeks are one of my favorite things, cleaning them can be a bit tricky. I’ve found that cutting them and soaking them in cold water for 5 to 10 minutes before giving them a quick shake helps to remove any dirt. I drain them and give them a quick pat dry before using.

Makes: 20 slices from the four quarters

Ingredients:

  • 2 medium leeks, cleaned, white and green parts sliced into 1/8-inch rounds
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil or extra-virgin olive oil
  • 6 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for sprinkling
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt, plus more for sprinkling
  • 2 cups plus 1/4 cup almond milk, other non-dairy milk, or whole milk, separated
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut milk yogurt, or whole milk yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons thyme leaves, finely diced
  • 1 large egg

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and a sprinkle of flour.
  2. Sauté the leeks with the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Caramelize for 15 to 20 minutes until the leeks become translucent and golden brown. Remove from the heat to cool.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, sift the flour, baking soda, and sea salt. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the 2 cups of milk and yogurt until blended. Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients. With a clean hand and fingers outstretched like a baseball glove, stir in the milk-yogurt into the dry ingredients until there are no dry patches. Add the thyme and caramelized shallots to the dough, tossing about to ensure both are well distributed. Wash and dry your hands.
  4. Slide the dough onto the lined and floured baking sheet. Form it into a round. With a floured knife, cut an X about 2-inches deep into the dough making sure to not go all the way to the baking sheet. Whisk the remaining 1/4 cup milk and egg together, and brush it all over the top and sides of the dough. Sprinkle with a little extra sea salt.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven for about 25 minutes or until the top is golden in color and the loaf sounds hollow when tapped on the underside. Cool before breaking into quarters, slicing, or gifting.

Materials

  • Clean linen or flour sack towel
  • Parchment paper
  • Tag

Directions

  1. Lay the towel flat on a table. Place the rectangle of parchment in the center, and the loaf in the center of the parchment. Fold two opposite corners in on over the bread, covering it in its entirety. Pull up the two other opposite corners and tie into a knot over the bread.
  2. Write your label and affix it through the knot of the towel.
Photos taken by Heidi Murphy/White Loft Studios.

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Comments

  • MaryBeth Brown

    Looks great…but I am confused…should the recipe include Leeks? I see shallots listed…I hope to make this in the next day or two…please advise! Thanks!

    • Oh MaryBeth, I’m so sorry about that! The leeks part has been updated and I added in my nifty way for cleaning them. I hope you enjoy the recipe! xo

  • Wow this sounds amazing!! I’ll definitely need to make this.