This is not your usual bread. This is neither a yeast bread nor a quick bread. In fact, this bread has no leavener at all.
This is a heavy, dense bread. And that is part of what makes this hearty, rich loaf — inspired by a similar recipe on Sarah Britton's blog My New Roots — so wonderful. The other part is what's in it. It's made from all manner of delicious seeds, nuts and grains.
While this bread may not be the best choice for a roast beef sandwich, consider toasting it and smearing it with butter and marmalade, or making crostini to top with smoked salmon and creme fraiche. Or let it sit on your cheese board alongside a runny brie. And don't even get us started on how well it pairs with peanut butter.
Feel free to play around with the blend of seeds and nuts. But the psyllium seed husks are what hold the loaf together, so don't omit those. They can be found at most natural foods stores. If you can only find ground or powdered, use 3 tablespoons.
By the way, all those nuts and seeds do add up to a hefty helping of fat in this bread. The good news is that these are the good fats, the ones we're told to eat more of. Here's your chance.
SUPER SEED BREAD
Start to finish: 4 hours 15 minutes (15 minutes active)
2 tablespoons honey
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 3/4 cups water
1/2 cup hulled pumpkin seeds (often labeled pepitas)
1/2 cup hulled sunflower seeds (sometimes labeled sunflower seed hearts or meats)
1/4 cup whole flax seeds
1/4 cup white sesame seeds
1/4 cup chia seeds
1 cup quick oats
1/2 cup quick barley
1/4 cup psyllium seed husks
1/2 cup slivered almonds, toasted
1/2 cup hazelnuts, toasted
1 teaspoon kosher or fine sea salt
DIRECTIONS: Coat a loaf pan with cooking spray.
In a measuring cup, whisk together the honey, olive oil and water.
In a medium bowl, mix together the pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, sesame seeds, chia seeds, oats, barley, psyllium seed husks, almonds, hazelnuts and salt. Pour in the water mixture and mix well.
Pat the mixture into the prepared loaf pan, smoothing the top with moistened fingers. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for at least 3 hours or up to overnight.
When ready to bake, heat the oven to 350 F. Uncover the loaf and bake for 30 minutes. Remove from the loaf pan and place on a wire rack in the oven. Bake for another 30 minutes, or until deep golden brown and hollow sounding when tapped. Let cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.
Nutrition information per serving: 280 calories; 170 calories from fat (61 percent of total calories); 19 g fat (2.5 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 0 mg cholesterol; 21 g carbohydrate; 8 g fiber; 4 g sugar; 9 g protein; 170 mg sodium.
(Recipe adapted from Sarah Britton's blog, http://www.mynewroots.org/site/ )