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Recipe Test: super-food protein loaf

Recipe Test: super-food protein loaf

The term ‘super-food’ is attached to everything from broccoli to goji berries, and can be a little overused! However, at its core, a super food just combines several health benefits into one while still, hopefully, being delicious. This recipe for a superfood loaf from Jamie Oliver offers the comfort of chewy bread in a gluten free, seed packed, punchy protein boost. But without any grain-based flour, could it really live up to being a bread?

Pros

Store-cupboard ingredients

Quick to prepare

No kneading

No need to prove dough

Springy, bread-like texture

Delicious nutty, pumpernickel taste

Gluten-free (if Marmite omitted)

Dairy-free

Keeps for several days

Great toasted

Excellent aperitif basis

 

Cons

Not suited to sweet toppings

Very subtle rosemary flavour


What we did differently

We used 150g mixed seeds, rather than adding separate linseed,  as the combination we purchased already had a high linseed content.

As yeast can be temperamental if it’s not entirely fresh, so we added an extra teaspoon of it (see cooking tip, below) for good luck.


Cooking times can vary depending on your oven, and the outside of this loaf colours quickly, so err on the side of caution as you can always let it cook a little longer later.

Make it easy on yourself…

The rosemary taste was very subtle, so if you’d like a more robust herby hit, we suggest doubling the quantities of herbs, or adding in some oregano or savoury for an extra depth.

The loaf very quickly acquired a rich, brown soft surface, but it’s not the sort of bread that will achieve a crispy crust. If the outside is getting too dark, cover the loaf with foil and turn down the heat a little until skewer comes out clean.


Cooking tip

Dried yeast can be temperamental, and easily affected by moisture or heat, so try our top yeast activating tips:

  1. Use an extra teaspoon of yeast if it’s a little old
  2. Add a pinch of sugar to give the yeast something to ‘eat’
  3. Use water that’s warm, but not too hot or it will kill it
  4. Use a ceramic bowl and plastic or wooden implements to stir the mixture, not metal
  5. Make sure your implements aren’t soapy
  6. If it’s activating, the bowl will froth up like a cappuccino and smell a bit like beer! If it’s not, the mixture will separate into lumps and you’re best off starting again.

 

Conclusion

This moreish loaf is genuinely quick and bread-like, with strong, nutty, savoury flavours reminiscent of pumpernickel or rye. Slices cry out for fresh, sour, Scandi-style flavours with a bitter edge. We suggest quark with olive tapenade, or slices of cucumber and radish on light cream cheese. Our favourite toppings, taking the loaf to new heights, are Scandi-style pickled herring for that rich oiliness combined with sharp vinegar, or cool, silky avocado and a fresh tomato salad.

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