Reiska is the Finnish version of Irish soda bread. It’s a whole grain quick bread made with either barley or rye flour, oatmeal, and buttermilk and it relies on baking soda and baking powder rather than yeast to help it rise. It’s baked on a large sheet pan resulting in a flatbread rather than a loaf. The bread is baked in a very hot oven, 500 degrees, and when cooled, cut into squares. The bread has a light texture, pairing perfectly with a poached egg, cheese or a bowl of soup and salad.
Reiska Whole Grain Flatbread
1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup (113 grams) rye flour
1 cup (120 grams) All-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
- Preheat oven to 500 degrees F. This bread requires a very hot oven. Spray the bottom of a 9 x 13 inch sheet pan with cooking spray.
- In a large bowl, whisk together dry ingredients (oats through sugar). Make a well in the center and add olive oil and buttermilk.
- Mix together until combined. The dough will be sticky.
- Transfer dough to prepared sheet pan, using a plastic spatula, sprayed with baking spray to prevent the dough from sticking, to spread dough so it covers the entire pan.
- Bake for 15 minutes until golden brown and springs back when lightly touched. Cook an wire rack before cutting.
Note: I recommend weighing the flour. Keep an eye on the bread while it’s baking. Because the oven is very hot, it can burn easily. This recipe was adapted from King Arthur Baking Company. The original recipe called for butter but substituted olive oil, and it called for a longer baking time.