If there’s one bread that inspired me to learn how to bake, it’s this one. Why? Because it is a no knead, hence, no mixer needed kind of bread. And funny how I’ve only come round to baking it now after more than 6 months of baking more complicated knead intensive breads.
But I’ve come to realize that the timing is just perfect. Yes, the seasons have finally changed. We now said goodbye and good riddance (for now…until next year!) to the awful Texas summer. I welcome the cold air with open windows, jammies at night, fleece blankets, warm snuggles and the constant hunger pangs. How constant? Instead of eating every 4-5 hours, I get really hungry after 2-3 hours. The first time I experienced it, I thought there was something wrong with me. But eventually I learned that the hunger pangs are more frequent because the body burns more energy to keep it warm. For those who experience real winters, you do know that the struggle is real. Hahaha!
This is the bread to have in the cold months as it is dense with fruit, nuts and seeds, making it a hearty snack to satiate those crazy cold weather hunger pangs. It is so easy to make and stores well in the freezer.
- Dry ingredients
- 1 1/4 cups dark rye flour (195g)
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (195g)
- 1 1/2 cups rolled oats (150g)
- 1/4 cup flaxseeds (35g)
- 1/4 cup sunflower seeds (35g)
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped or broken nuts of choice (70g). I used pistachios.
- 1 cup chopped dried fruit of choice (150g). I used dried tart cherries.
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Wet ingredients
- 1 3/4 cup yogurt or buttermilk (Zora says if you only have thick Greek style yogurt, thin it out with a little milk and if you don’t have any buttermilk, you can add vinegar or lemon juice to any whole milk. I did add around a quarter cup of lime juice in mine and let it sit for 15 minutes.)
- 1/4 cup Swedish “beet syrup”, honey or maple syrup (I used maple syrup in mine.)
- 1/4 cup molasses
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Food scale (optional)
- Large mixing bowl
- Spatula and / or wooden spoon for mixing
- Loaf pan (You have the option to use one large one or smaller ones)
- Preheat your oven to 350F. Grease your loaf pan with butter or spray the bottom with oil then line it with parchment paper.
- Mix all dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Then mix all wet ingredients in a separate bowl.
- Mix wet ingredients with dry ingredients until there is no dry flour in sight. The mixture is very dense and heavy, so it can be a little bit of an arm workout to make sure everything is mixed well.
- Pour the mixture into the loaf pan. Use the spatula to smoothen the top of the loaf.
- Bake for 90 minutes if using a large loaf pan. If using smaller loaf pans, bake for around 60 minutes or less depending on the size of the pan. Check for doneness by poking a stick through the middle, which should come out clean.
- Remove loaf from pan and let cool on a cooling rack for at least 5 hours or overnight. I’ve read that rye bread should be cooled much longer to allow the crumb to dry.
- Slice into thinly, quarter inch thick slices, then store in the freezer. To eat, grab a slice/s and warm in the oven / toasted.
Best had with a generous smear of real butter, a sprinkle of salt (or a sliver of prosciutto ham if you’re feeling fancy) and black coffee or strong tea. I am a fan of the sweet and salty combination, but you can always spread whatever you want over that hearty piece of toast. Maybe some cream cheese or even brie cheese! Or plain old peanut butter.
I plan to make another batch once I’m done with this one. Feel free to mix up the fruit and nut combination. I’m looking at a blueberry and walnut or a mango and cashew loaf next time. Any other fruit and nut combos that sound good?
Thank you to Christina Topham for the original recipe by way of the lovely Zora O’Neill of Roving Gastronome, who welcome me into her lovely home and introduced me to this treat. I can still remember standing in her kitchen and savouring each bite of bread with a hot cup of coffee.
Oh and Happy Thanksgiving to everyone in the US!