True Irish soda bread has caraway seeds and/or raisins in it ~ both of which I can live without so I never put them in but you can add them to this recipe if you want. This is an easy recipe that I found in Bon Appetit a few years ago.
Irish Soda Bread
2 cups flour
5 tbsps sugar, divided
1 1/2 tsps baking powder
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp baking soda
3 tbsps cold butter, cut in cubes
1 cup buttermilk
Preheat oven to 375º and grease an 8-inch round cake pan.
Blend flour, 4 tbsps sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda in a large bowl. Add the cubes of butter and using your fingers, rub into the flour mixture until coarse crumbs form. Make a well in the center of this mixture and add the buttermilk. Gradually stir in the flour mixture into the buttermilk. Blend well but don’t over mix.
Shape dough into a ball using floured hands if needed. Transfer to greased pan and flatten slightly (dough may not come to the edges of the pan). Sprinkle 1 tbsp sugar over the top.
Bake until brown and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean ~ about 40 minutes.
Cool in pan 10 minutes and then transfer to a rack. Serve warm or at room temperature. This is best if eaten on the day it is baked.
Slice into 8 wedges.