In Ireland, soda bread is a big staple. The x or cross cut into the top of the dough not only helps it rise, but, according to Irish folklore, it's also used to either ward off evil or to let the fairies out. :)
Sift flour, salt and baking soda into a mixing bowl. Make a well in the center and pour in most of the buttermilk. Mix together well using your hands. The dough should be soft but not too wet. If necessary, add the remaining buttermilk.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead it lightly Shape into an 8-inch circle. Place loaf onto prepared baking sheet and cut an X or a cross into the sop using a sharp knife.
Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, until golden brown and it sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool slightly. Serve warm.