Today’s recipe is a quick bread I’ve bookmarked from The Modern Vegetarian Kitchen. Peter Berley’s book is a reference on vegetarian/vegan culinary, and while some of the recipes in the book may look a bit laborious, the end results are well worth it. Anyway, this bread won’t take you that much time to make, and having the grains cooked, you’re only a few steps way from getting a good loaf of fresh, homemade bread.
The original recipe called for five different kinds of grains, but I didn’t have all of them at home, and ended up making the bread with only three – millet, quiona, and brown rice. I guess we’re here talking about a baked good that has a very similar flavor to that of soda bread, and I think it isn’t without that purpose that the recipe calls for two and a half teaspoons of baking soda. The addition of cooked grains contributes for a fluffier and kind of moist bread, while the toasted sunflower seeds add a bit of crunchiness to the whole thing. If you attempt at making this, you’ll notice that sunflower seeds will turn greenish after being baked – although being unaesthetic, is just a natural reaction that happens when seeds are mixed in a batter that has baking soda on it.
I made this bread yesterday, and I’ve been eating it toasted with some vegan margarine and a spoonful of homemade chutney. It made my lunch today along with a courgette soup, but it also makes a good aftenoon snack, along with a cup of tea. With such a bad weather around here in the last couple of days – it has basically been raining constantly – all I want is to stay inside and to be sourrounded by comforting and nourishing foods such as this.
Three Grain Spelt Bread
- ½ cup (60 grams) sunflower seeds
- 3 ½ cups (1 liter) water
- 4 tablespoons brown rice
- 4 tablespoons quinoa
- 4 tablespoons millet
- 1 ¾ teaspoons fine sea salt
- 3 cups (300 grams) spelt flour
- 2 ½ teaspoons baking soda
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 9 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- Pre-heat the oven to 180ºC. Line a 25 x 7 cm baking pan with parchment paper, and brush it lightly with olive oil.
- Heat a skillet over medium-high heat, and toast the seeds for 5 to 8 minutes, or until golden brown.
- In a pot, bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Add the grains, reduce the heat to low-medium, and cook, covered, for 30 minutes, or until all the water has been absorved. Add ¾ teaspoons of fine sea salt to the cooked grains, and mix well to combine. Transfer the grains to a large bowl.
- In another large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and the remaining salt.
- Add the olive oil, remaining 1 ½ cups of water, and the vinegar to the grains and whisk well.
- Fold the grain mixture into the flour mixture, just until combined. Do not overmix – a few lumps won’t matter.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 50minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean.
- Let the bread cool for 10 minutes in the pan, after which it should be transfered to a wire rack to cool completely before slicing. The bread will keep, wrapped tightly and stored in an airtight container, for up to2 days.