Step 1. Make sure to preheat your oven to 400°F (204°C). For the baking vessel, you have several options: you can use a regular baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper. Dutch ovens can be lined with parchment paper or greased on all sides. However, one of the best ways is to use a seasoned 10 to 12-inch cast-iron or carbon steel skillet for the job. These skillets will ensure that your bread bakes evenly in your oven. Plus, you have an easy way to serve your bread once it is finished.
Step 2. After that, whisk the egg and buttermilk together and set aside. Then take the flour, baking soda, granulated sugar, and salt and mix in a large bowl. The butter should be cold, and you need your fingers, fork, or pastry cutter to cut and incorporate into the mixture. Remember that since there is a lot of flour in the recipe, you need to cut the butter until it is about the size of a pea.
Step 3. Next, add the raisins and pour in your egg/buttermilk mixture. You need to gently fold the dough until it reaches the point that is too stiff to stir. Pour that dough onto a lightly floured surface. Make sure to flour your hands and work the dough into a ball shape. You will then knead for another 30 seconds or until all of the flour is incorporated. If your dough is very sticky, use more flour in the mixture.
Step 4. Now you can transfer the dough ball to a prepared pan or skillet. You want to score an X on the top with a very sharp knife. Bake this bread until it has a golden brown color and the center is fully cooked, around 45 minutes. If your bread is developing heavy browning on the top, you can loosely cover it with some aluminum foil.
Step 5. Once the bread has a golden-brown crust, you can remove it from the oven and allow it to cool down for 10 minutes. This quick bread can be served warm or at room temperature. Any leftover bread should be covered and stored at room temperature. You can leave it on the counter for two days or in the refrigerator for one week.