Friday, February 02, 2024


There is nothing I love more than baking bread early in the morning. The soothing comfort of silence, the smell of wonderfully fermented dough, and the pleasant warmth coming from the oven. I cherish those moments greatly, every single time.
This loaf quickly became one of my favourites, mainly because of the spelt flour and its rich and nutty flavours, but also because it is incredibly simple and straightforward to make. One bowl, one sturdy wooden spoon, and a bit of patience; perfect for busy days and novice bakers.
Although you can prepare it and let it rise in the pan or pot you plan to use for baking, however I generally let it rise in a separate bowl, and then place it on the baking sheet or in a heavy pot, similar to a Dutch oven, right before baking. That is, however, completely up to you and your preferences.
Same goes for the seed topping - feel free to use any and all seeds and seed combinations you like. I find the blend of sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, a bit of crushed pumpkin seeds, and some caraway delightful, but you can also use crushed almonds or hazelnuts, especially if you plan on serving it with sweet spreads.
On a final note, if you like, you can brush it with oil before adding the seeds and nuts; it will add a bit of richness, make the crust a bit browner, and help the seeds stick much better. All that is left is to bake it to your liking, wait until it is cool enough for you to handle, break it by hand, and serve.

250 grams plain flour
100 grams spelt flour
2 teaspoons salt
30 grams granulated sugar
25 grams fresh yeast
250 millilitres warm water
50 millilitres vegetable oil
4 tablespoons toasted seeds of choice

Crumble the fresh yeast into a bowl, and add in the the sugar and the warm water. Whisk well, and leave the bowl in a warm place for about 10-15 minutes, so the yeast can activate. Sift the flours and salt twice onto a large sheet of baking parchment, and set it aside briefly. Add the oil to the activated yeas, mix well, and add in the flour mixture.
Mix vigorously with a wooden spoon until bread dough starts to form and almost pull away from the sides. It will look somewhat wet, but that is fine. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, cover it with a clean kitchen towel, and let it sit in a warm place until doubled in size, about an hour.
Once ready, deflate the dough. You can press it down to deflate it, tap the bowl on the counter, or mix it again well with a wooden spoon, to help it shape into somewhat of a boule. Prepare a large baking sheet by lining it with a sheet of baking parchment and turn the oven on to preheat to 220°C. Turn out the dough onto the baking sheet, generously mist it with cold water, and add all of the toasted seeds on top. Lightly press them down wiht your hand so they stick to the loaf.
Let the dough rise for another 20-30 minutes in a warm spot, on a baking sheet lined with baking parchment, while the oven is preheating. Bake the loaf in a nicely preheated oven, at 220°C, for about 25-30 minutes, or slightly longer, depending on how you prefer your bread. Once baked, remove it from the oven, mist it lightly with cold water, let it cool down just a little bit, and serve. Yields one bread loaf.