Buckwheat Bread Revolution Baking in Franschhoek
Intolerance to certain foods is growing at a phenomenal rate worldwide as manufactures of processed foods add more and more additives to enhance flavours and extend the shelf life of their products.
Gone are the days when a loaf of bread was simply a loaf of bread baked with wholesome ingredients using age old and trusted methods of baking. Nowadays commercial breads are packed with all sorts chemical additives such as calcium propionate, amylase, chlorine dioxide and L-cysteine hydrochloride or other varieties of chemical concoctions. Yes the bread smells good, tastes good and last a good time longer, but is it healthy and wholesome.
Also baking methods have been speeded up in order to mass produce the daily loaf. All these technical adulterations have one goal in mind, lower the cost of production, produce more bread and sell as much of it as possible, at a lower price point, before it starts to rot on the shelves as the chemical ingredients start to break down.
It also comes down to the base ingredients. For bread, that is wheat, but, is the wheat grown today the same quality as the wheat grown fifty years ago. Has the use of insecticides and enhanced fertilisers affected the quality? Do modern farming practices produce healthy foods or is quantity more of a priority over quality? With food allergies such as gluten intolerance on the rise, consumers are becoming increasingly conscious of the health aspects of modern processed foods.
Recently, my wife Jo, and I, discovered that we were gluten intolerant. I used to be able to eat any breads without experiencing any discomfort, but over the last few years that all changed. And then Jo discovered Buckwheat.
Buckwheat, despite its name is not related to wheat and is gluten free. Commonly known as pseudocereals, buckwheat is seeds similar to cereal grains but do not grow on grasses. Buckwheat has a better nutritional value than other grains and is high in minerals and antioxidants.
And so Jo made buckwheat bread and has spent a month refining and perfecting a recipe. The bread is simply delicious. After not being able to eat wheat based bread, we have been gorging ourselves with buckwheat bread. The loaves, although they don’t last long in our house, stay fresh without any preservatives. The fourth and fifth day the bread can still be toasted and remains delicious. Jo has been passing her recipe to friends in the village, and now we are sharing it on Franschhoek at your Fingertips.
Indeed there is a Buckwheat bread revolution baking in Franschhoek!
Buckwheat Chickpea Bread Recipe (Vegan & Gluten Free)
Preperation time – 15 mins
Cook time – 70-75 mins
A healthy activated buckwheat chickpea bread with mixed seeds. Perfect gluten-free bread for toast or sandwiches.
Serves: 1 loaf
2 cups (360 g) raw buckwheat, soaked in water for 2 hours (or up to 8 hours)
2 tablespoons chia seeds 6 tablespoons luke warm water
1 cup (120 g) chickpea flour (or try 70g Chick pea + 50g almond or any gluten free flour)
3 tsp phosphate-free baking powder
1 tablespoon psyllium husk or powder
2 teaspoons sea salt
1 – 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup or honey or molasses
1 tablespoon unfiltered cider vinegar
160 ml cold water
Stir in after mixing –
2 tablespoon sunflower seeds
2 tablespoon pumpkin seeds
1 tablespoon flax seeds
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
NOTE: Soak the buckwheat in enough water to cover until it is soft enough to crush when squeezed between your fingers, but not over 8 hours.
1. Preheat oven to 180°C and grease a loaf pan with coconut oil. Alternatively, line a loaf pan with parchment paper.
2. Place the chia seeds and lukewarm water in a small bowl and let stand for about 5 minutes (or until it takes on a gel-like texture).
3. Meanwhile, drain the soaked buckwheat and rinse thoroughly, until water runs clear. Drain excess water.
4. Add the buckwheat, chia mixture, oil, maple syrup, vinegar and cold water (basically all the WET ingredients,) to a food processor and blend until smooth. Then add chickpea/glut free flour, psyllium husk, salt and blend well. Last of all, add your baking powder and seeds, and mix for no more than a minute, so you minimize the activation of the rising agent.
(If you don’t have a food processor, you can also use an immersion blender, then stir well with a spatula once smooth).
5. Quickly pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Smooth with a spatula and garnish with seeds (if desired).
6. Bake on the middle rack for 1 hour and 15 minutes, until just brown on top. The bread is done when it is golden and sounds hollow when tapped, or when a knife comes out almost clean.
7. Set the bread on a wire cooling rack a let rest in the loaf pan for 10 minutes, and then turn the bread out onto the wire rack to further cool. Allow to fully cool before slicing.
8. Store in a bread box or wrapped in parchment paper. Enjoy fresh or toasted for up to 5 days.