Sunday is my breadbaking day. For years I made my weekly bread with my own from-scratch sourdough starter that I ministered to (fearfully at first) with lots of love and TLC. For the past few years now I have (kicking and screamingly) gone gluten free and pretty much flour/grain free for health-related reasons (leaky gut and an almost lifelong case of candida) and so I’ve put my sourdough bread baking and consuming on hold for the time being.
Although I continue to hold out hope that I will someday to be able to get back to tinkering with the magical alchemy of natural leavening, in the meantime I have worked hard on coming up with a recipe for a gluten-free bread that will serve my essential need as a butter vehicle. I am a firm believer and practitioner of the ‘everything is better with butter’ worldview.
So after years of trawling so many of the many many gluten-free (GF), Paleo and candida-diet websites out there, and trying out all sorts of recipes, I have finally come up with one of my own that wholly satisfies my bread craving – and one that doesn’t end up a gloppy brick (as some of my gluten free experiments have). I personally don’t like lots of the ingredients found in many of the GF baking recipes out there like corn starch, tapioca flour, guar gum, potato starch, etc. I find them all too gummy and processed for me. And most of these ingredients aren’t allowed on the anti-candida diet I find myself on (yet again). I did go through a gluten-free sourdough period of baking, which was satisfying in a sort-of-kind-of way, but it involved lots of flours that I am not using either at the moment (like brown rice).
But my passion for bread (and butter!) has kept me forging on in my quest for a recipe that satisfies my current dietary requirements (a little strict to say the least) and my deliciousness quotient requirement, which is also on the stricter side given that if I had my way I’d be eating pecan pie every day followed by a slice of key lime too.
So I finally devised a recipe that works for me (and my kids – my ultimate taste testers) – yielding a soft, rich, yummy bread, which I can toast if I want something crunchier. It turns out to also be a pretty good source of protein, fiber and Omega-3 fatty acids, so it could even be considered pretty Paleo-friendly (if you sub the buckwheat for almond flour!). Its magical adaptable quality allows it to even transition into a suitable vegan/vegetarian loaf if you employ another nifty ingredient swap and substitute the eggs for chia seed gel (for every egg, use a gel made of 1 tablespoon of ground chia seeds to 3 tablespoons of water and let sit for five minutes.)
Here you have it:
Fast, Yummy and Gorgeous Gluten-free, Yeast-free Bread (Dairy and Egg-free too if you please)
- 1 cup of buckwheat meal- soaked for at least 7 hours or overnight (to reduce the level of phytic acid, an antinutrient found in all grains, nuts and seeds…more on this in an upcoming blog!) For a more Paleo-friendly recipe, swap the buckwheat for (soaked) almond flour.
- 3/4 cup flax seed meal (I grind my own seeds in a spice grinder)
- 1/4 cup coconut flour (if you can’t find coconut flour, you can also grind plain old coconut flakes in the spice grinder)
- 3 eggs – beaten (for a more Paleo-friendly loaf, add 4 eggs)
- 1/2 cup kefir or water
- 1/3 cup melted butter (or coconut oil)
- a good pinch of salt
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- honey or stevia (optional)
- if you want a yummy spiced bread, add 1 tbsp of fennel seeds, 1 tsp of cinammon, 1 tsp ginger and a pinch of ground cloves.
Either the morning of your baking day or the night before, mix the buckwheat flakes in the 1/2 cup of kefir or water in a glass or ceramic bowl and cover with plastic wrap (if the mixture is too dry, add a few spoonfuls more of liquid). Leave the buckwheat to soak in a cosy warm nook for at least seven hours.
When you are ready to start baking, heat the oven to 350º and butter a loaf pan, cutting out a wax paper strip to cover the base of the pan.
Add all of the dry ingredients to the soaked buckwheat mixture, then add the melted butter, beaten eggs and sweetener (1 tbsp honey or 15 drops of liquid stevia). If your dough is looking too dry, add a spoonful of kefir or yogurt.
Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the loaf is cracked and browned on top – and a toothpick or knife come out crumbly but clean.
Cool on a rack for at least 30 minutes (if you can stand it!).
Serve with slabs of butter 😉