islandhopper wrote: it does involve finding buttermilk from somewhere.
I'm lazy: one cup milk mixed with one tablespoon of lemon juice and I never have to sheepishly ask where to find the buttermilk in the shop.
Here is a really easy soda bread I've made a few times and it's always great:
Mixed dried herbs
220g plain flour
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
180ml buttermilk (or 180ml milk mixed with 1 tbsp of lemon juice or white wine vinegar)
30ml olive oil
roasted peppers from a jar or jalapeños or sundried tomatoes or all of the above, in small pieces
50g mozzarella, in pieces
Preheat the oven on high and grease and line a sandwich tin with baking paper.
Put the herbs, flour, bicarb of soda and buttermilk (or substitute) in a bowl and mix with your hands. Add the olive oil and mix to form a dough. It'll be quite wet - don't panic. Press the dough in to the tin and stud it with the peppers/jalapeños/sundried tomatoes. Put the mozzarella on top of the bits (so they don't burn) and bake towards the bottom of the oven for 15-20 minutes, depending on how hot the oven is (I'd keep an eye on it past the 15-minute mark).
Leave it to cool and rest for a bit (at least 15 minutes) and then top with a bit of olive oil, salt and basil, if you want.