Wholegrain seeded loaf (gum free, yeast free, egg free, dairy free)
A visit to Chambelland bakery last week and a piece of their ‘5 grains’ gluten free bread had me craving a seedy loaf this weekend. I don’t eat much bread these days. If I do I invariably make it myself unless I’m at a renowned GF boulangerie and want to sample their wares – purely in the interests of research you understand. It’s strange how quickly one loses the habit of eating bread. Eating a sandwich for lunch is now almost a novelty, which hopefully explains my almost childlike enthusiasm for a ready made Marks and Spencer gluten free sandwich while on the road in UK recently.
So back to this loaf. During my internet trawls I knew that somewhere I had read a recipe written for the thermomix using wholegrains ground up, rather than flour. I also knew about the benefits of soaking nuts and wholegrains before cooking, to reduce the phytate content (see below!). So the planets aligned when an instagram post by the talented IzaKitchen led me to her recipe for a ‘magic loaf’, which then led me here, to here, to here and here. Baking a loaf of gluten free bread sometimes seems awfully like an exercise in investigative journalism.
I think this is a really interesting loaf for lots of reasons. Firstly it works. Secondly you can use up all those little ends of packets and jars of lentils, rice etc to make it. I used brown/green lentil, some brown rice and millet but you can also use quinoa, buckwheat groats, any rice, and red lentils. The colour of the resulting loaf will change each time – you might notice this loaf in the photos is slightly purple in colour. I suspect that is because I made it with a mixture of grains including green lentils.
This bread doesn’t need yeast which is useful for people who can’t tolerate yeast and for those who are put off by the prospect of using it. It’s actually a kind of soda bread or what used to be called a ‘quick bread’. Now doesn’t that sound reassuringly simple to make?
It is also dairy free, egg free and added sugar free. A small miracle for a gluten free loaf.
And it’s completely do-able for the non GF person who wants to make something for a GF friend or family member. The purchase of psyllium husk is required, not something most regular bakers have in their kitchen cabinet, unless you make one of the other versions linked in the text above, using ground chia seed instead of psyllium. Just make sure you line your baking tin well with baking parchment if it’s been used for gluten bread before – those pesky crumbs can hide in the corners and might make your GF chum sick.
This loaf keeps well in a cupboard for about 4-5 days, is delicious both fresh and toasted and freezes well too. What more can you ask? I’ll post some more photos when I next make it with other grains. As always, make the loaf your own by varying the grains and seeds used.
I’m keen to try the same idea of soaked ground wholegrain with a sourdough to rise rather than the bicarbonate of soda. A first trial is promising – so watch this space!
Note: If you’re interested in reading more about soaking grains then I’d point you in the direction of this post on the blog of Naomi Devlin, whose book ‘Food for a Happy Gut’ is released later this year.
Seeded wholegrain loaf
based on this recipe here
your choice of a mix of wholegrains (see above) – lentils, rice, quinoa, buckwheat groats, millet, measured up to a total volume of 375ml in a measuring jug
water + 1tbsp cider vinegar for soaking
20g psyllium husk
2 tbsp cider vinegar
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp sea salt
25g sunflower seeds
25g flax seeds
knob of butter
handful of sunflower seeds
1. Place the wholegrains in a large bowl, cover with water, add 1 tbsp cider vinegar, stir and leave overnight 12-24 hours to soak.
2. The next day drain and rinse the grains, then drain well and place in a food processor or Thermomix.
3. Preheat the oven to 180C (160C Fan). Grease a 1kg (2lb) loaf tin with butter and coat with the handful of sunflower seeds.
4. Measure the water in a small bowl, add the psyllium, stir and set aside for 5 mins to gel.
5. Place the 2 tbsp vinegar, bicarb, salt and gelled psyllium in with the grains and process until smooth, scraping down the sides occasionally.
6. Add the seeds and mix to combine.
7. Turn the mixture into the prepared tin and smooth the top with a wet spatula.
8. Sprinkle the top with poppy seeds.
9. Bake for 40 mins then remove from the oven, make a shallow cut down the centre of the crust of the loaf (to allow it to expand evenly) and return to the oven for a further 40 mins bake time.
10. Remove from the tin and return to the oven shelf (without a tin) for a final 10 mins to brown the crust.
11. Remove and cool on a cooling rack until completely cold before slicing.