Recipe: 5 Seed Sourdough
This delicious wheat free bread takes a little planning but is easy to make.
RECIPE: Buffy Ellen-Gill of Be Good Organics
Takes 15 mins + 50 mins to bake (+ 3 days wait for sourdough method)
5 c rye flour
2 1/3 c warm water
1 1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 c pumpkin seeds
1/4 c sunflower seeds
1/4 c sesame seeds (hulled)
1/4 c chia seeds
1/4 c poppy seeds
1/4 c extra virgin olive oil
Sourdough starter: Mix 1c flour with 1 1/2c of warm water in a bowl (or food processor as I do), then leave in a warm place covered with a tea towel overnight.
The next day, mix in 1/4 cup of the remaining 4 cups of flour and 1/4 cup of your remaining water, and cover again til the next day.
After two days, taste – if the mix is slightly sour, you’re ready to bake. If you prefer a more sour bread (or if you’re in a cooler climate) you might need to wait up to four days for the starter to be sufficiently sour – keep adding 1/4 cup flour and water each day as above to keep the starter brewing.
Pre-bake day: Mix all remaining flour and warm water, along with the seeds, olive oil and salt into your starter, either in a food processor on the lowest speed, or use the dough cycle if you have one.
Pour the mix into a lightly greased tin, spreading it out slightly higher at the two ends and lower in the middle, as per the photo above. It will rise more in the middle so this technique will give you a nice flat loaf like mine above. Cover your loaf tin with a tea towel and leave again in warm place overnight for it’s final rise.
Bake day: Preheat your oven to 180°C (350°F), then place your loaf in the oven down low and bake for 45-50 minutes until a skewer comes out dry. Remove and let cool on a wire rack for 5 or more minutes before slicing.
This slice is naturally wheat free and low in gluten, thanks to the use of organic whole grain rye flour. Rye is a lovely grain which is much better digested than refined and bleached wheat flour. I highly recommend it! If however you are gluten intolerant (coeliac), you can replace this with your favourite gluten free flour blend, or a blend of 1/2 cup buckwheat flour + 1/2 cup brown rice flour + 1/2 tsp guar gum for each cup of rye flour used.
The sourdough process can take anywhere between two and four days, depending on your climate (colder climates take longer). We’re mid winter (but a warm house), and I found two days was sufficient – still slightly sour but not overly so.
Once you get in the groove of making this, it’s honestly the least labour-intensive process. Just mix your starter and leave on the bench overnight, add a bit more flour and water the next day, and the remainder the following, then next morning bake. Done. Delicious.
If you don’t want to wait the 2-3 days using the sourdough method, you can also make a quick yeast-based loaf with this recipe. Add 2 tsp of dried active yeast and 2 tbsp coconut nectar to your dough, leave to rise for 2 hours in a warm place in the loaf tin, then bake as per the above (no overnight waits).
You can also make an even faster baking soda version, with no rising/wait time at all. Simply add 1 tsp of baking soda and the juice of half a lemon to the mix, and put straight in the oven without any rising time. Try the three methods and see what flavour you prefer. Although the sourdough version does provide the benefits of the loaf being fermented, which is wonderful for your gut bacteria and immune health.
The dough is quite sticky, not dry at all – don’t worry, this will create a lovely moist loaf.
This bread slices beautifully straight out of the oven and for a few days is delicious eaten fresh in sandwiches (like these Danish Open-Faced Sandwiches here). Wrap in a tea towel once cool and keep in the cupboard for up to five days. It’s also brilliant toasted, spread with my Turmeric Butter or Basil & Kale Pesto.
It also freezes brilliantly – simply slice to your desired thickness then place in a bag in the freezer and remove each slice as you need.
If you don’t have all the seeds above, simply replace with the ones you have available to make up the same 1 1/4 cup total measure (hemp seeds, if they’re legal where you are, are delicious). The chia seeds are great substituted with linseeds/flaxseeds.
For a nice variation, try adding 2 tbsp of dried herbs or 4 tbsp of fresh chopped herbs to your mix – rosemary, thyme and oregano are all lovely.
I’ve used a silicon loaf tin for this loaf (measuring 22.5 by 9 cms, and 5.5 cm deep). It makes clean-up a breeze, and the loaf pops out super easily with no sticking or remnants – definitely worth acquiring if you decide to make this bread regularly (which I hope you do!). Just make sure you buy a quality brand so that it’s able to cope with high temperatures safely.
Buffy-Ellen Gill is the founder of Be Good Organics, a plant-based wholefoods blog, store and community. After being diagnosed with Graves autoimmune disease four and a half years ago, Buffy was able to recover from her illness with the help of a plant-based whole foods diet and lifestyle. She is now passionate about sharing her knowledge with others, so that they too can reach optimal health. Buffy is currently completing a degree in Nutrition and Naturopathy, to further augment her knowledge, and has future plans to pursue a PhD in plant-based nutrition.