Sometimes you just have to eat bread, even if being (hay fever type) allergic to wheat (and rye) makes you want to scratch your eyeballs out of your head. But this time of year, hazel and alder pollen are attacking, too, so yielding to the temptation of a slice or two of buttered toast piles misery upon misery and asthma attack. So I thought it’s time to go back to baking seed “bread”.
The previous recipe I’d tried was a pain in the butt. It was mostly whole rolled oats, hazel nuts, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower (or almonds, if you preferred) bound together by a several tablespoons of Psyllium husks and coconut fat. ARGH. While at least baking the hazel nuts seemed to side-step the food allergy I have to them during hazel pollen time, the coconut fat was a nightmare. You had to melt it, measure out the right amount, and then add it to the whole mess after you’d added water because that was the best way to get it dispersed somewhat in the few moments you had before it hardened back up again. And then, during the course of the overnight soak, all the Psyllium husks (which, in German, are called flea-seed shells (Flohsamen Schalen , which is a way better name for them) would float to the surface, either repelled by the fat or unimpeded by the fairly large-grained, mostly hazelnut halves matrix. This bread was also impossible to get out of the loaf pan afterwards, crumbled like crazy, and was a great way to suddenly, urgently purge the contents of your large intestine, especially because it was so tasty it was hard to stop eating the bread once you started and 3-4 Tbsp of Psyllium husks, EEEK!
The last couple of times I’ve been at the grocery store, I’ve seen the prominently placed display of Wunder Brød gluten-free bread mix the store has set out, but since I refuse to pay any company money for throwing together a bunch of dry ingredients I could measure out myself, I never had a closer look at them (much less bought one). But last night, in between sneezing fits, I thought I could at least look up their ingredient list and use it for inspiration. And, (if you can read German), if you click on the pictures of the labels at the bottom of the page linked to in the first sentence of this paragraph, you’ll see what I saw, which was that the dreaded coconut fat was not used. Hurrah!
So here’s the bread I threw together roughly following their 37% rolled oats and rolled millet and 60% seeds formula. All I had in the house, however, was sunflower seeds (they used a mixture of sunflower seeds, chia seeds, crushed and whole flax seeds, and sesame seeds), and instead of rolled millet, whole grain red millet flour. I also threw in some medium to coarsely cut whole buckwheat groats and some whole oat groats just because they were there on the shelf in the kitchen. And it turned out okay!
Next time I go shopping (Wednesday, maybe), I’ll pick up some pumpkin seeds (because sunflower seeds alone were boring), and maybe I’ll see if I can replace the millet flour with either whole millet (easy to find) or rolled millet (hahahahahaha… I’m not expecting to meet with success on that front), but in general, I think I’ll stick to this general recipe that I came up with. It doesn’t quite adhere to the 37% whole grains to 70% seeds/nuts ratio. More on that front maybe in a week or two, once I’ve acquired ingredients more interesting than sunflower seeds (then I’ll try to bump the seeds back up to their rightful full 360 grams, which may require more Psyllium to hold the loaf together, since I suspect the cut buckwheat groats (and the millet flour) were doing a lot of the adhesion in this recipe).
Wheat-free/gluten-free Seed Bread, Version 1
- 1 cup rolled whole oats
- 1/2 cup whole rolled millet or whole grain millet flour
- 1 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1 Tbsp Psyllium husks
- 60 g whole oat groats
- 100 g medium to coarse cut buckwheat groats
- 200 g seeds (mainly sunflower, plus any combination of things like pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, hemp seeds, flax seeds, etc) (also possible are coarsely chopped walnuts, almonds, and/or hazel nuts)
Mix all the dry ingredients together in a bowl. Add 500 milliliters of water, cover, and let sit 3 hours to overnight.
Oil a relatively large loaf pan (e.g., 25 cm x 10 cm), pour/pat in the batter, and place in an oven that has NOT been preheated. Set temperature to 200°C (390°F) and bake for 1 hour and 20 minutes.
Remove immediately from the pan and cool on a rack.