I just love bread of any kind and sometimes I want to have it ready to enjoy sooner rather than later. So a bread this uses baking soda to give it some lift does the job. I have made this bread many times with slight variations and it is a winner each time.
Today I did not have any walnuts, so substituted hazelnuts and the fruit of choice was goji berries. I was given some outrageously delicious pomegranate molasses for a Christmas present and so I used that for a touch of sweetness. Yum, yum, yum! So feel free to play with the recipe and add nuts and fruit of your choice. Freshly ground flax seeds add moisture to the soda bread. I liketo use one of Linwoods Organic Milled Flaxseed blends, but freshly ground flax or chia seeds work perfectly.
You will see that I used half rice milk or nut milk and half soda water. This in not essential but I like the flavour the soda water adds. Any nut milk will work perfectly. A little fat is provided by the almond butter which needs to be whisked into the non-dairy milk with the sweetener.
I have made this recipe as one large loaf as well as dividing the mixture into 2 and 3 loaves. All the sizes work very well. The 3 smaller loaves are delightful for parties, they are so pretty with their crosses and dusting of flour. Serve the spelt soda bread as a nourishing addition to soups and salads. It pairs beautiful with either sweet or savoury toppings. For a snack top it with chocolate nut butter or humus.
Oh and one BIG request. I am thrilled that Joy of Yum is one of the top ten finalists in the 2016 Food Magazine Food Reader Awards! Let’s give our Whole Food Plant Based Lifestyle a chance to HIT #1. Jump over here to cast your vote. Thank you, thank you! Voting ends on Jan 3rd.
500 grams, 18 oz wholemeal spelt flour
1 rounded teaspoon sea salt
2 rounded teaspoons baking soda
½ -1 cup chopped walnuts
½ cup (50g) ground flaxseeds or chia seeds
½ -1 cup cranberries, or raisins or goji berries
2 cups rice milk or other nut milk (or ½ milk ½ soda water)
1 tablespoon date syrup or maple syrup
¼ cup almond butter
What to do
Preheat oven to 180℃ (160℃ Fan) 360 ℉
1. Sieve the flour, salt and baking soda into bowl. Add the walnuts, cranberries and ground flax seeds.
2. Whisk together the date syrup, almond butter, milk, and soda water if using it.
3. Pour the liquid ingredients over the dry ingredients and gently mix together. The dough should be lovely and moist much like a scone dough.
4. Wet your hands with a little water and shape the dough into 1 large round loaf or 2 smaller loaves. Place the loaves onto a greased baking tray.
5. Sprinkle the soda bread with a little flour. With a sharp knife cut a cross over the top of the bread.
6. Bake for 20 minutes then reduce the heat to 160℃ (150℃ Fan) 320 F and bake for another 10 – 15 minutes until cooked through and the crust is golden brown. If baking smaller loaves reduce the time to 30 – 40 minutes total. The bread is cooked when it sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.
7. Cool the spelt soda bread for at least 10 minutes before slicing and savoring each delicious morsel.
Whole Food Plant Based Lifestyle Tip: Wholemeal spelt flour has a higher amino acid profile then regular wheat flours. It is high in fiber which may help to keep your digetstive system moving along smoothly! Spelt flour can be found in most supermarkets as well as health food shops. The flax seeds add Omega 3 and 6 which are essential for good health.