This gluten free, dense, healthy, and flavorful bread is very like a Scandinavian black bread. Cut it thinly to serve with cheese, toast it for avocado toast, or pop a poached egg on top. It will delightfully satisfy your hunger and hold you over until your next meal.
There are many versions of this bread on the internet but they are all similar. David Lebovitz calls his Adventure Bread (his inspiration was from Josey Baker and his book Josey Baker Bread), My New Roots calls it The Life-Changing Loaf of Bread, and Deliciously Ella calls it Superfood Bread.
What they all have in common are sunflower seeds, chia seeds, almonds, and psyllium husk. Are you familiar with psyllium husk? I had to look it up myself, here is a short tutorial:
“Psyllium /ˈsɪliəm/, or ispaghula /ˌɪspəˈɡuːlə/, is the common name used for several members of the plant genus Plantago whose seeds are used commercially for the production of mucilage.
Psyllium is mainly used as a dietary fiber to relieve symptoms of both constipation and mild diarrhea and occasionally as a food thickener. Research has also shown benefits in reducing blood cholesterol levels.
As a thickener, it has been used in ice cream and frozen desserts. A 1.5% weight/volume ratio of psyllium mucilage exhibits binding properties that are superior to a 10% weight/volume ratio of starch mucilage.” Here is the link to Wikipedia if you want to learn more.
In this bread the binding power of psyllium replaces the gluten in flour. It has the added benefit of being a powerhouse of fiber. I am anticipating surgery at the end of this month and know how all those antibiotics and pain killers effect my intestinal health. Food is medicine, right? This bread will find a place in my freezer, ready for me when I come home from the hospital.
I baked David Lebovitz’s recipe and intend to try the others as well. I will let you know which I prefer.
Note: Start this bread the day before you plan to bake it. Most of the “didn’t work” comments are from those who ignored either this step or the one to let it rest for 2 hours after baking.
Ingredients – Dry:
- 2 1/4 rolled oats, gluten free
- 1 cup of sunflower seeds, hulled
- 1/2 cup of pumpkin seeds, hulled
- 3/4 cup of almonds, toasted and coarsely chopped
- 3/4 cup of flax seeds
- 1/3 cup of psyllium seed husks
- 3 tablespoons of chia seeds
- 2 teaspoons of sea salt
Ingredients – Wet:
- 2 tablespoons of honey or maple syrup
- 1/4 cup of olive or other neutral oil
- 2 1/2 cups of water
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F or 180 degrees C. Spread the sunflower and pumpkin seeds on a baking sheet and toast until they start to brown. This took about 10 minutes in my oven, stir them around half way through. This is also a good time to toast the almonds on another sheet.
- When brown, remove from the oven and cool, coarsely chop the almonds.
- While they are cooling, prepare your 8 or 9-inch by 4-inch loaf pan. Line it with baking paper so the bread is easy to remove when baked. David recommends greasing the pan but I didn’t find that adequate and the bottom stuck. The bread was good but not so pretty.
- Measure out your ingredients and place all the dry in one large bowl. Mix them up and then pour in the wet stuff. Mix everything very well with your hands or a large spoon. You need to really mush it up.
- Scoop it into the prepared pan, smoothing the top. Cover and stick it in the fridge overnight and up to a whole day. You want the psyllium to completely absorb all the liquid.
- When you are ready, take the bread out of the fridge and bring it to room temperature.
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F or 200 degrees C.
- Bake the bread for an hour on the middle shelf.
- When done, remove the bread from the pan and cool for at least 2 hours on a rack. This is very important, don’t hurry this step.
- Slice thinly to serve.
You can slice this bread and pop it in the freezer.