Recipes | Easy South African seed bread


Easy South African seed bread

I discovered this deliciously nutty bread in South Africa when I first visited back in the 90s and couldn't stop making it but had forgotten about it until I was reminded about it the other day by winemaker Bruce Jack. This is the version I put in my book The Healthy Lunchbox, adapted from one I was given by Silwood School of Cookery in Cape Town.

It really is one of the easiest breads out there

South African seed bread

You will need a 900g loaf tin, preferably non-stick

450g malthouse or granary flour

50g bran

50g sunflower seeds + extra for topping

15g each poppy and sesame seeds + extra for topping

1 1/2 tsp fine sea salt

1 1/2 tsp easy blend yeast

2 tsp barley malt extract (available from health food stores) or clear honey

1 tbsp sunflower oil + extra for oiling the tin

Tip the flour, bran, seeds and salt into a large bowl and mix together well.

Measure out 500ml of lukewarm water and stir in the barley malt extract or honey.

Sprinkle the yeast over the flour mix and pour over the oil and half the liquid. Start mixing it together with a wooden spoon. gradually adding as much extra liquid as the flour will absorb. The consistency should be slightly wetter than a normal loaf. Keep stirring until the dough begins to come away from the sides of the bowl (about 2 minutes). Tip the dough into a well oiled loaf tin, pressing it down evenly.

Using a teaspoon carefully shake each of the seeds in a vertical line down the length of the dough (see photo) and press down gently.

Cover the tin loosely with clingfilm and leave to rise for about 25-30 minutes until the surface of the loaf is about 1.5cm from the top of the tin.

Meanwhile heat the oven to 190°C fan/400°F/Gas 6. Bake the loaf for about 40 minutes.

Using a round-bladed knife loosen the sides of the loaf away from the tin, carefully ease it out then return the bread to the oven for a final 5 minutes for the base to crisp up.

Take the loaf from the oven and leave on a cooling rack until completely cold before slicing. It's particularly good with cheese and also with honey!

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