4 1/4cupall purpose flourplus more for hands and surface
5tablespoonsunsalted buttercold and cut into cubes. Plus additional for greasing
Preheat oven to 425° F. Grease an ovenproof skillet (I used my cast iron) or a cake pan with butter.
In a large bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Set aside. In a small bowl, whisk the buttermilk and egg together. To the dry ingredients, cut in the cold butter using a pastry blender until the mixture resembles course crumbs. Fold in the raisins with a rubber spatula.
Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the buttermilk mixture. Fold the dough together. When the dough is too hard to stir, use floured hands to work the dough into a rough ball. Place the dough on a floured surface and knead for 30 seconds. All the flour will be moistened and the dough will be slightly sticky. Do not overknead the dough and do not add more flour unless the dough is very very sticky.
Transfer the dough ball to the greased skillet. With a buttered serrated knife, score an X in the top of the dough. This not only adds to the rustic charm, but it helps the center of the brad bake through. Bake in the preheated oven for 45-55 minutes. The bread is done when it’s golden brown and the center is cooked through. If too much browning occurs, place foil over the top when finishing baking.
Serve bread warm, at room temperature, or toasted. The bread can dry out quickly, so keep tightly wrapped in foil or plastic wrap. It will keep for 3-4 days (if it doesn’t get eaten by then) or can be frozen after baked.
You’ll want your skillet to be between 8 and 10 inches. You can bake this on a baking sheet but the bread may spread more.