Spelt and Cider Loaf

Coronavirus lockdown time had everyone baking bread. I was a bit of a laggard – we don’t eat a lot of bread so it was not my first thought. But, 4 months later than everyone else, I saw a recipe that had me visiting my secret supplier of bakers flour and fresh yeast (everywhere else was out of good quality product), and this beautiful loaf was born.

The recipe that excited my bread-baking genes was one from Nigel Slater that includes spelt flour and dry cider! The cider gives it a lovely, almost sour dough, tang. It is mixed with milk for a beautiful soft crust. This is Good Bread!

Similar recipes include Pita Bread, Sweet Potato Bread, Olive Oil Bread with Parsley, and Pane de Prato.

Browse all of our Bread recipes and all of our dishes from Nigel Slater.

Continue reading “Spelt and Cider Loaf”

Pita Bread

Although the precise and detailed science of bread making has never been adopted in this household, there was a time that I baked bread every day. We had everything from brioche to focaccia. Honestly, any yeasted dough that I could mix in the morning so that it could prove during the day, and be cooked in the evening as the rest of the meal was prepared was fare game in our Kitchen in the mid to late ’90s. We would have never won prizes for our bread making but we loved it, and it was much cheaper than buying bread in those days (these days it is better than the horrid cheap breads that are available – I can hardly recognise them as bread).

I loved cooking Pita Bread and watching it puff up in the oven as it met the heat. It was a magic that I never tired of. The recipe we used was from the much loved cookbook of those times, Moosewood Cookbook.

It is easy to make bread if you have a machine with a dough hook, or if you are used to making bread by hand.

Other alternatives are -Use a food processor. Mine comes with a dough blade, but many people say that using a metal blade is just as effective (if not more so). Mix your dry ingredients with the food processor first, then add the wet ingredients and pulse about 12 pulses to combine the wet with the dry. Then process for 15 seconds 3-4 times. In between, stop the processor, lift out the dough and turn over. After 3 or 4 times, the dough will have come together nicely. It will also be warm from the heat of the processor. Hand knead the dough for 3 – 5 mins until smooth and elastic.

You can also use your Vitamix blender to make the dough. It comes with a “Dry” container with a special blade, with which the dough is pulsed and scraped. It mixes the dough nicely and reduces kneading time. Use a similar process to the one mentioned above for the food processor. If the blender seems to be labouring, turn it off immediately, turn the dough and try again.

Similar recipes include Spelt and Cider Loaf, Pol Roti, Quick Roti, and No Knead Focaccia.

Feel free to browse our Retro Recipes series. You might also liked our other Bread recipes. Or explore our Late Autumn dishes.

This recipe is part of the Retro Recipes series of recipes that contains some of our vegetarian recipes from our first blog in the 1990’s.

We use Australian measurements: 1 tspn = 5ml; 1 Tblspn = 20ml; 1 cup = 250ml.

Continue reading “Pita Bread”

Sada Roti

Sada Roti is a Trinidad style roti, perfect with Baigan Choka. It is a staple in Trinidad, easy to make and can accompany any meal. The Indian influenced cuisine made its way to Trinidad with indentured servants who worked in the cane fields in the 1800’s.

The recipe is simple, just 4 everyday ingredients. The trick is to make sure that the dough is silky and smooth and that the tawa or griddle is evenly heated. The roti will puff up quite easily, but if it doesn’t, don’t worry, it will still taste delicious.

Similar recipes include Pita Bread, Roti Style Yoghurt Flatbreads, Pol Roti, and Roti from Goa.

Browse all of our Roti recipes and our Trinidad dishes. Or browse our Late Summer recipes.

Continue reading “Sada Roti”

The Life Changing Loaf of “Bread”

My daughter put me on to this loaf many years ago – it’s a nutritionist’s dream as it is packed with all things good. Fibre plus, nuts, seeds, chia, turmeric, and raw honey (or use sweetner of choice).

There are a few variations on the bread, but the one I make is based on My New Root’s recipe. I have made a couple of alterations over the years and have reproduced it below.

Similar recipes include Overnight Oats, Bondi Overnight Oats, and Sweet Quinoa and Oats Congee.

Browse all of our Oats recipes. Or explore our Early Winter dishes.

Continue reading “The Life Changing Loaf of “Bread””

Sweet Potato Bread with Raisins and Walnuts

We don’t bake bread very much any more, mostly because we don’t eat very much of it. But this loaf is special. Full of walnuts and raisins, flavoured with sweet potato, it is a tempting loaf. We love it for breakfast, slightly toasted with real butter. Enjoy!

Similar recipes include Spelt and Cider Loaf, Pita Bread, The Life Changing Loaf of BreadOlive Oil Bread with Herbs, No Knead Focaccia, and a Tuscan Bread.

Or browse all of our Bread recipes, all of our Sweet Potato dishes, and our Late Winter collection of dishes.

Continue reading “Sweet Potato Bread with Raisins and Walnuts”

Dakos | Tomato and Bread Salad from Crete

Dakos, the salad, is a loved salad of Crete, made with rock hard crisp breads and tomatoes, feta and olives. Ottolenghi has a version in his book Plenty More, born of his stay in Crete where he fell in love with it.

Dakos is alsothe name given to  oven-dried breads (often called rusks), which are made with barley to make them sweeter, nuttier and more crunchy than their wheat-only counterparts. Spread out on a plate and covered with the best ripest chopped tomatoes, good olive oil, some crumbled white cheese and black olives, they are seriously addictive. (Confusingly, both this dish and the unadorned rusks themselves are called Dakos!)

Cretan barley rusks aren’t easy to come by (try Greek grocers or online), but the salad Dakos is easy to make with any dried bread, e.g. the Italian Frese Integrali (aka friselle, freselle, frisedde, fresedde, frise) or the Swedish wholemeal Krisprolls, which are more commonly available in some supermarkets and many specialty stores. The tomato juices and vinegar seep into and soften the dry bread as they mix with the creamy cheese and olive oil, to create a timeless Greek experience.

However, if you don’t have access to Dakos or other rusks, try drizzling some medium thick slices of wheat bread with olive oil and baking for 10 – 15 mins in a 175C – 180C oven. They need to be hard, and the ingredients of the salad soak into the bread to soften it and make it addictively delicious.

The taste of any simple tomato-based salad is dependent on the quality of the tomatoes. There is a rich and beefy depth to end-of-season tomatoes that can exceed even those of high summer, but if yours are anything other than bursting with flavour, a pinch of sugar or a few drops of balsamic vinegar will help draw out their natural sweetness. And maybe mix your feta with some ricotta, to simulate the flavour of the sweet Cretan mizithra cheese, which is often served with dakos. (Thanks for this advice, Ottolenghi.)

This is an Ottolenghi dish from Plenty More – we are cooking our way through this book. We feel free to substitute ingredients that are not readily available in our local area.

In fact it is Ottolenghi Cooking the Books Day on the blog – one of two days per month where we publish the latest recipes we have tried in our project of cooking from Ottolenghi’s books – those we have cooked directly and those we have been inspired by. Currently we are cooking from Plenty More, but not ignoring his other books completely. Note that I often massage the recipes to suit what is available from our garden and pantry. For the original recipes, check his books and his Guardian column.

Similar recipes include Baked Dakos with Tomatoes and Chickpeas, Simple Tomato Bread Salad, and Tapanade Bread Salad with Mozzarella.

Browse all of our Tomato Salads, and all of our Salads. Our Ottolenghi dishes from Plenty More are here. We have written about our experiences cooking through this book. Or explore our Mid Summer dishes.

Continue reading “Dakos | Tomato and Bread Salad from Crete”

Pol Roti | Coconut Roti | Sri Lankan Flatbread

These Pol Roti are very popular in Sri Lanka, are eaten at all meals by many, and are particularly loved for breakfast. Pol Roti pairs well with curries, and Sri Lankan sambols, pickles and chutneys. They are even delicious with butter and jam!

A tawa is perfect for cooking them, but you can use any flat pan, griddle, hot plate or BBQ.

Pol Roti can be made thin or thicker. We have made them thick here, but you can choose to roll them out to a thinner roti. Chop the onions or chilli into smaller pieces for thinner roti.

Similar recipes include Sada Roti, Quick RotiRoti from Goa, and Adai.

Our Roti recipes are here or explore other Indian/Sir Lankan breads. Have a look at other Sri Lankan recipes, or browse our Indian dishes. Or simply check out our easy Early Summer recipes.

Continue reading “Pol Roti | Coconut Roti | Sri Lankan Flatbread”

Schiacciata with Cheese Topping

If Focaccia is half way between pizza and bread, then Schiacciata is half way between Focaccia and Pizza. It is flat and usually infused beautifully with olive oil.

Originally cooked in the ashes of the hearth, schiacciata, meaning squashed, is flat and 2 – 3 cm thick (but can be thinner). Variations of the bread are made throughout Italy. In Tuscany, it is simply brushed with olive oil and sprinkled with salt. Herbs such as rosemary can be added. A sweet version with grapes and sugar is also made.

This recipe with onion and cheese is great weekday lunch-at-home fare, even for Sunday night supper. It is great with a hearty soup. Maybe Onion Soup would be fabulous. In late Summer, pair it with ripe, bursting figs and celebrate the end of summer.

Similar recipes include Pita Bread, The Life Changing Loaf of Bread, Potato and Garlic Pizza, and Sweet Potato Bread with Raisins and Walnuts.

You might also liked our Focaccia recipes. Our pizza recipes are here. If you need pizza dough, the recipes are here. Feel free to browse other recipes from our Retro Recipes series. Or explore our Late Spring dishes.

Continue reading “Schiacciata with Cheese Topping”

Simple Tomato Bread Salad

When life is busy, simple is necessary. Eating healthy but quickly means the freshest of ingredients, whatever is in the fridge, without too much thinking or cooking. We are in that space at the moment, life is busy, simple is the way we are eating. Simple but good. VERY good. It is important to remember that salads need not be complex or take time to make.

For this salad, toast some bread really well, and mix it with some tomatoes for an awesome salad. The success of the salad lies in great tomatoes and a very good, tasty, extra virgin olive oil.

Are you after other Tomato Salads? Try Dakos, Na’ama’s Fattoush, Tomato Salad with Parsley Oil, Red Pepper and Tomato Salad with Crispy Flatbread, Tomato and Pomegranate Salad, and Kachumber – Indian Tomato and Cucumber Salad.

Similar Salads include Dates and Spinach Salad with Almonds and Sumac, and Locquat Salad.

You can browse all of our Bread Salads, Tomato Salads, or indeed all of our many many Salads. Or take some time to explore our Mid Autumn dishes.

Continue reading “Simple Tomato Bread Salad”

Indian Toasties | Paneer Toast

A spicy toastie filled with paneer and tomato.

Bread doesn’t actually see the light of day very much in this household. It makes an occasional appearance, for guests, or for some recipe we are making. This week, as we had bread left over from that occasional appearance, we turned to Indian Toasties. This time, it is Paneer Toast.

Similar recipes include Australian Toasties, Spinach, Mozzarella and Ricotta Toasties, Indian Vegetable Toasties.

Are you looking for snacks? Try here. And browse our Toasties. Our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. You might like our Mid Autumn recipes.

Continue reading “Indian Toasties | Paneer Toast”